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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.

Self portrait, 1971

Thomas de Kessler

pen and ink on paper (sheet: 27.8 cm x 19.2 cm)

Thomas de Kessler, artist, came to Australia from Hungary in 1950. Born into an academic and creative family, he spoke several languages and had attended art school before arriving in Melbourne. In 1953 he opened a stained-glass window business, but two years later he returned to study, furthering his art skills and training as a teacher. He taught at Williamstown and Collingwood technical schools and won the Herald art prize for graphics before transferring to the Department of Education, where he became a senior planning officer. He remained in the department until he retired in 1987, having encouraged the introduction of various facilities and innovations to new technical colleges in the state. He is represented in the National Gallery of Australia, the National Gallery of Victoria and the National Portrait Gallery, which has two drawings he made of John Perceval in 1999.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Diana de Kessler 2009

Accession number: 2009.52

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Thomas de Kessler (age 46 in 1971)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

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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.