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General Cosgrove, Dili, East Timor 1999
, 2006

by Rick Amor

oil on canvas (frame: 84.5 cm x 103.5 cm, support: 80.5 cm x 100 cm)

His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (b. 1947) is the 26th governor-general of Australia. Trained at RMC Duntroon, Cosgrove commanded a platoon in Vietnam in 1969-1970 and was awarded the Military Cross for leading a hard assault on enemy positions. Cosgrove’s subsequent commands included those of the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment and the 1st Division of the Australian Army; and he was Commandant of Duntroon from 1996 to 1998. In 1999, Cosgrove was appointed Commander of INTERFET, the international peace-keeping force for East Timor. He was Australian of the Year for 2001, Chief of Army until 2002 and Chief of the Australian Defence Force until 2005. In 2006, Cosgrove was called upon to oversee the rehabilitation of North Queensland communities in the wake of Cyclone Larry. On being sworn in as governor-general on 28 March 2014, Cosgrove became a Knight of the Order of Australia.

In this portrait from 2006, Rick Amor reconstructs a number of source images from his time in East Timor as an official war artist in 1999. The figure on the left is Cosgrove’s bodyguard, Corporal Kirsty Hearn, and the two figures at the very back, on the right, represent Rick Amor and Private Cameron Simpson of the Army History Unit.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Purchased with funds provided by Andrew Cannon
and L. Gordon Darling AC CMG 2006
Accession number: 2006.34