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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.

Bob Brown at his home in Liffey

1988 (printed 2013)
Helga Leunig

inkjet print on paper (sheet: 29.7 cm x 42.0 cm, image: 25.6 cm x 38.0 cm)

Bob Brown (b. 1944) is an environmental campaigner and the former Parliamentary Leader of the Australian Greens. The son of a country policeman, Brown studied medicine at Sydney University and in 1972 moved to Tasmania, where he worked as a general practitioner in Launceston. His passion for the Tasmanian wilderness was sparked by a rafting trip down the Franklin River in 1976, the same year that he became a founding member of the Wilderness Society. From then until 1983 he famously led the campaign against proposed dam-works on the Franklin, during which he was arrested and gaoled. The river was subsequently preserved with a World Heritage Listing. In 1983, he began a decade in the Tasmanian House of Assembly as the Member for Denison. He was elected to the Federal Senate as a member of the Tasmanian Greens in 1996 and later joined West Australian Greens Senator Dee Margetts in founding the Australian Greens. At the 2001 Federal election Brown was re-elected to the Senate with a greatly increased vote. By the time he retired from politics in April 2012, he had overseen the emergence of the Greens from a fringe to a mainstream political force. Brown remains one of the most-recognised Australian political figures, known for his outspokenness on the environment as well as human rights and social justice issues. His memoir Memo for a saner world was published in 2004.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Helga Leunig 2013
© Helga Leunig

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

Helga Leunig

Bob Brown (age 44 in 1988)

Donated by

Helga Leunig (4 portraits)

Related information

The Companion

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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.

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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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