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Dan Sultan
, 2011

by Martin Philbey

type C photograph (frame: 92.7 cm x 123.8 cm)

Dan Sultan (b. 1983), singer- songwriter, was born in Melbourne, his father Irish and his mother of the Arrernte and Gurindji people of the Northern Territory. He wrote his first song at age ten and was 22 when he released his debut album, Homemade Biscuits (2006). Included on it was the single ‘Your love is like a song’, which won himthe Deadly Award for Single of the Year in 2007. Sultan’s second album, Get Out While You Can (2009), reached number 1 on the independent Australian charts and in 2010 won him the ARIAs for best male artist and best blues & roots album; the Deadlys for best single and best male artist; and the Australian Independent Record Label Association awards for best independent artist and best independent blues & roots album. Having appeared with Paul Kelly and others on the Kev Carmody tribute album Cannot Buy My Soul (2007) he made his screen debut in the 2009 film Bran Nue Day. The album Blackbird (2014), recorded in Nashville, won the ARIA for best rock album. Sultan’s subsequent releases include Killer (2017) and an album for children, Nali and Friends (2019).

This portrait was a finalist in the National Photographic Portrait Prize in 2012. Martin Philbey said he wanted to show Sultan ‘stripped back to the essence of his being, with no other distractions. Everything that makes him who he is is on display’.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Purchased with funds provided by Ruth and Peter McMullin 2013
Accession number: 2013.30