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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, 1999/2005

Tracey Moffatt

black and white photograph, pen, and hand-coloured photograph on paper (frame: 45.5 cm x 52.5 cm, sheet: 27.5 cm x 35.2 cm)

Tracey Moffatt AO, artist, was born in Brisbane and graduated from the Queensland College of Art in 1982. Moving to Sydney, in 1989 she held her first solo exhibition, Something More. In 1990 her short film Night Cries was selected for official competition at the Cannes Film Festival, as was her first feature-length film, Bedevil, in 1993. Following the photographic series Scarred for Life (1994) she was invited to exhibit in the Venice Biennale in 1997, and during that year held solo exhibitions in Germany, Denmark, France and the USA. Since then, she has built a high international reputation with a body of films and photographic series such as Laudanum (1998), Invocations (2000), Under the Sign of Scorpio (2005), First jobs (2008) and Spirit Landscapes (2013) reflecting on issues including race, childhood trauma, gender and popular culture. In 2007 she received the Infinity Award from New York’s International Center of Photography; in 2012 she had a solo show at the city’s Museum of Modern Art. In 2017 she will become the first indigenous Australian artist to present a solo exhibition at the Venice Biennale.

The black and white photograph in this diptych was shot in the USA in 1999. It features Moffatt’s instructions for the retouching of the second image, which was hand-painted at a studio in New York in 2005.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Tim Fairfaix AM 2013
© Tracey Moffatt
Courtesy of the artist and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney.

Accession number: 2013.7.a-b

Currently on display: Gallery Five (John Schaeffer Gallery)

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Artist and subject

Tracey Moffatt (age 39 in 1999)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

Related information

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Self portrait, 1999/2005 Tracey Moffatt
Self portrait, 1999/2005 Tracey Moffatt
Self portrait, 1999/2005 Tracey Moffatt
Self portrait, 1999/2005 Tracey Moffatt

Home truths

Magazine article by Joanna Gilmour, 2013

Despite once expressing a limited interest in the self portrait, the idea of it has figured strongly in much of Tracey Moffatt's work and has done so in some of her most distinctive and compelling images.

Self-portrait, 1999
Self-portrait, 1999
Self-portrait, 1999
Self-portrait, 1999

A self-portrait in focus

Magazine article by Kim Appleby, 2002

In her self-portrait, Tracey Moffatt presents herself as her work.

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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.