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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.

Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill

2005
Ian Jennings

type C photograph on paper (sheet: 41.8 cm x 61.8 cm, image: 40.0 cm x 60.0 cm)

Lee Kernaghan OAM (b. 1964) is a country music singer and songwriter. Son of travelling country music artist and jet truck impresario Ray Kernaghan, Lee Kernaghan grew up in the Riverina. Although he first sang on the radio in 1969, and won the Starmaker Quest in Tamworth in 1982, he performed for ten dispiriting years in country pubs before releasing The Outback Club (1992), which won him the ARIA for Album of the Year. Scoring his first number one hit with the drought-relief single release 'Boys from the Bush' in 1995, he has since sold more than a million albums and has won 27 Golden Guitars - a tally second only to Slim Dusty's. Kernaghan works closely with co-writer and producer Garth Porter, formerly of Sherbet; their joint efforts include songs for the live production The Man from Snowy River: Arena Spectacular (2002). Over many years Kernaghan has worked to raise funds for country communities. When naming him Australian of the Year in 2008, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said that his music 'resonates with every Australian . . . [giving] hope and pride to those on the land when they need inspiration most.'

Australian of the Year 2008

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2008
© Ian Jennings

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

Ian Jennings (age 36 in 2005)

Lee Kernaghan OAM (age 41 in 2005)

Subject professions

Performing arts

Related information

The Companion

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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.

Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill
Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill
Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill
Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill

Australian of the Year

Inspiring a Nation

Previous exhibition, 2010

The Australian of the Year Awards have often provoked controversy about who is selected and whether their achievements are remarkable.

The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance

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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.

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