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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.

The Gallery’s Acknowledgement of Country, and information on culturally sensitive and restricted content and the use of historic language in the collection can be found here.

"The determined" Self_portrait

2002
George Foxhill

oil and resin on canvas (sheet: 170.0 cm x 120.0 cm)

George Foxhill studied art in his native Austria, attending the Kunstegewerbeschule and the Volkshochschule in Salzburg after the Second World War. He responded to the expressionist legacy of the city and the hardship and rude vigour of the times, and his lifetime’s work evidences affinities with Austrian expressionists such as Oskar Kokoshka whom he met in his youth. With his wife Rosa, Foxhill migrated to Australia in 1956. Two years later, the couple moved into the raw, newly established suburb of Dickson, now an inner-city area of Canberra. Foxhill’s strength of purpose and belief in himself carried him through years of cultural aridity in the Australian Capital Territory, in which he was one of very few serious expressionist painters. Finally, in the 1980s, the power of his portraits describing emotional and psychological states recognition began to be recognised. The National Portrait Gallery held an exhibition of Foxhill’s work, curated by Michael Desmond, in the last year of the artist’s life. Foxhill said ‘A painter paints not because he wants to represent what he sees and is competent to do so, but because the visible world stimulates him to satisfy his deep urge to shape his understanding of life and nature.’

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2007
© George Foxhill/Copyright Agency, 2021

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

George Foxhill (age 81 in 2002)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

Donated by

George Foxhill (1 portrait)

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

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.

Self Portrait with fruit, 2004
Self Portrait with fruit, 2004
Self Portrait with fruit, 2004
Self Portrait with fruit, 2004

Tender tragedies

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2006

George Foxhill's self portraits were the subject of a small focus display at the National Portrait Gallery in 2006.

Self Portrait with fruit, 2004
Self Portrait with fruit, 2004
Self Portrait with fruit, 2004
Self Portrait with fruit, 2004

George Foxhill

Self Portraits

Previous exhibition, 2006

Foxhill's portraits are more concerned with describing an emotional and psychological state than the surface topography of the human face.

© National Portrait Gallery 2021
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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 past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency