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Lt. A.R.Cutler VC
, 1943

by Dora Toovey

oil on canvas (frame: 104.5 cm x 90.0 cm, support: 99.7 cm x 74.5 cm)

Sir Roden Cutler VC AK KCMG KCVO CBE (1916-2002) was a soldier and diplomat before becoming Australia's longest-serving State Governor. An outstanding athlete, he won the Victoria Cross for his exceptional courage in driving the enemy back and establishing outposts which were a key factor in the capture of Merdjayoun in Syria. Shortly afterwards, he lost his leg as a result of another act of bravery in nearby Damour. Following the war, Sir Roden served in diplomatic postings to New Zealand, Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and Egypt. He became Governor of New South Wales in 1965, and in fifteen years in the post he never lost popular support. His outstanding public service earned him three knighthoods and numerous honorary degrees.

Dora Toovey's portrait, painted at the suggestion of her friend Dame Mary Gilmore, shows the young Lieutenant Cutler with his Victoria Cross ribbon.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the Cutler family 2017
Donated through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program
Accession number: 2017.136