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Sir Percy Spender
, 1981

by Alex Kolozsy

cold cast bronze

Sir Percy Spender KCVO KBE QC (1897- 1985) was a politician, statesman, diplomat and judge. Having gained a brilliant degree from the University of Sydney, he was admitted to the bar in 1923. Between 1937 and 1951 he was the Liberal member for Warringah. In 1951, during his two-year term as Minister for External Affairs, the Colombo Plan was signed, committing Australia to provide various forms of aid to various South-East Asian nations. Later that year Spender negotiated the signing of the ANZUS Treaty. He spent the rest of the 1950s as Chairman of the Australian Delegation to the United Nations and Australia's ambassador to the USA. In 1958 he joined the International Court of Justice, the Hague; he was President of the International Court from 1964 to 1967. Spender had ten honorary doctorates and his own publications testify to the breadth of his intellect and experience; David Lowe's Percy Spender and the American Century was published in 2002.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Gift of the artist and the New South Wales division of the Liberal Party of Australia 2004
Accession number: 2004.168