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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Portrait of Ninette Dutton, 2004

Bette Mifsud

type C photograph on aluminium (frame: 137.5 cm x 124.0 cm, image: 119.2 cm x 109.8 cm)

Ninette Dutton OAM (1923-2007), artist, broadcaster and author, was born in Adelaide and educated at Creveen and Woodlands before studying Social Science at the University of Adelaide. In 1944 she married the writer Geoffrey Dutton. They lived at Anlaby, the Duttons' family property at Kapunda, and later Piers Hill, a property near Angaston, before they separated in the early 1980s. During the 1950s she worked in Oxford and studied at the Ruskin School of Art and the couple travelled extensively and adventurously through Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. In the 1960s she learned enamelling in Kansas; her ensuing enamel works were widely collected, and she wrote Beautiful Art of Enamelling in 1966. In early 1968 she saved the life of Patrick White, a dear friend, by holding on to his arm when he fell into a blowhole on Kangaroo Island. Over the 1970s, 80s and 90s she published books and delivered radio programmes on cooking, flowers, gardening and the seasons, and for some years she wrote a column titled 'The Passionate Gardener' in the Advertiser, Adelaide. Her most recent book is Home (2000), which describes her decision to move from South Australia to Canberra.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2004

Accession number: 2004.35

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Bette Mifsud

Ninette Dutton OAM (age 81 in 2004)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

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On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Portrait of Ninette Dutton, 2004 Bette Mifsud
Portrait of Ninette Dutton, 2004 Bette Mifsud
Portrait of Ninette Dutton, 2004 Bette Mifsud
Portrait of Ninette Dutton, 2004 Bette Mifsud

In a glance

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2004

Dr Sarah Engledow explores the portrait of Ninette Dutton by Bette Mifsud.

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.