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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.

Norman C Deck

c. 1905
Harold Cazneaux

gelatin silver photograph on paper (mount: 30.7 cm x 18.9 cm, image: 14.7 cm x 10.8 cm)

Norman C Deck (1882–1980), photographer and dentist, joined the Photographic Society of New South Wales at the age of about fourteen, becoming its youngest-ever member. He began exhibiting in his early twenties, and began lecturing at the Society around the same time; in 1905 he won a gold medal at its annual Salon. Having graduated in dentistry, Deck practised in Cowra and then Sydney before taking up missionary work on the Solomon Islands in 1914; he remained there until 1948, taking many photographs, prints of many of which were lost. Meanwhile, in 1921, he was made an honorary member of the Sydney Camera Circle. After he retired and returned to Sydney, he reprinted his negatives, but used different materials. Deck’s negatives are in the Art Gallery of New South Wales, and the National Gallery of Australia has forty-five of his prints, with titles including ‘Those Stupendous Heights’, ‘Burbling Brook’ and ‘Lad with Coconuts’. In Cazneaux’s portrait, Deck is poring over a special 1905 issue of Studio magazine entitled Art in Photography.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2010

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

Harold Cazneaux (age 27 in 1905)

Norman C. Deck (age 23 in 1905)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

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.

Ethel Turner
Ethel Turner
Ethel Turner
Ethel Turner

Moving in creative circles

Magazine article by Joanna Gilmour, 2008

Harold Cazneaux's portraits of influential Sydneysiders included Margaret Preston and Ethel Turner, both important figures in the development of ideas about Australian identity and culture.

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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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