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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, c. 1982

Bea Maddock

photo screenprint with ballpoint pen framing lines on paper (sheet: 15.3 cm x 10.0 cm)
Image not available (NC)

Bea (Beatrice) Maddock AM (b.1934) is a painter and printmaker. For many years she was also a teacher and lecturer, and this self-portrait was made while she was teaching at the Launceston Teachers’ College and painting and printing in the early mornings and late evenings. She had recently returned from study in England and Europe, and was experiencing some artistic and personal doubt. However, she has said that this painting was an attempt to return to firm ground, an image of the artist ‘under control’.

Maddock’s latest work, completed over a period of five years, is a monumental series of drawings of the Tasmanian coastline, informed by her increasingly strong identification with Aboriginal spirituality. Entitled TERRA SPIRITUS . . . with a darker shade of pale, the work refutes the first colonists’ notion of terra nullius, the empty or uninhabited land.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of David Archer 2016

Accession number: 2016.66

Currently on display: Gallery Five (John Schaeffer Gallery)

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Artist and subject

Bea Maddock (age 48 in 1982)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

Donated by

David Archer (2 portraits)

Related portraits

1. Fleeing figure, 1988. All Bea Maddock, Larry Rawlings.

Related information

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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.