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Frank Lowy
, 1998 (printed 2011)

by Lorrie Graham

gelatin silver photograph (sheet: 50.5 cm x 40.2 cm, image: 40.1 cm x 26.8 cm)

Frank Lowy AC (b. 1930), businessman and philanthropist, is the co-founder of the Westfield Group, which currently operates over 100 shopping centres in Australia, New Zealand, the UK and the USA. Czechoslovakian-born Lowy spent World War II in Nazi-occupied Budapest, leaving Europe in 1946 for Israel. In Australia from 1952, he joined family members in a smallgoods business and with compatriot John Saunders started the Westfield Development Corporation, which opened its first shopping centre at Blacktown in 1959. By the 1970s, there were Westfield centres in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, the company expanding into the USA, New Zealand and the UK in the succeeding decades. A fixture on Business Review Weekly’s Rich List every year since 1983, Lowy was a director of the Reserve Bank from 1995 to 2005 and during this period was named Australia’s leading philanthropist, with gifts in 2002 of $10 million. A longstanding advocate of soccer in Australia, Lowy was elected chairman of Football Federation Australia in 2003; and established the Lowy Institute for Foreign Policy the same year. In 2008 he made an undisclosed donation to the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute and in 2010 gave $10 million towards the Lowy Cancer Research Centre at the University of New South Wales. Having first learnt in the early 1990s of his father’s death at Auschwitz in 1944, Lowy funded the restoration of a railway carriage that had been used to transport Jewish people to concentration camps; the carriage was then relocated to Auschwitz as a memorial to his father and the thousands of others who died there. Made a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2000, in the US Lowy has been honoured with the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship (2005), and the Henni Friedlander Award for the Common Good (2007). He assumed a non- executive role at Westfield in 2011 but remains the chairman of the FFA.

Lorrie Graham (b. 1954) completed a photography cadetship at the Sydney Morning Herald before moving to London in 1978 to work at the Observer. She returned to Australia in 1981 and was staff photographer at the National Times until 1987 when she became picture editor and chief photographer at the Times on Sunday. After two years with the Bulletin, Graham went freelance and in recent years has completed many government assignments for organisations such as AusAID. Graham’s work has also included photographic commissions, solo and group exhibitions, books and stills shoots for films. She has been published in newspapers and magazines including the Times, the Washington Post, the New York Times, Stern, Paris Match, Time, Newsweek, Rolling Stone, HQ Magazine, the Age, the Independent, the Independent Monthly, and the Australian.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2011
Accession number: 2011.98