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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.

Hudson Fysh

1951
Max Dupain

gelatin silver photograph on paper (mount: 50.5 cm x 40.7 cm, image/sheet: 49.0 cm x 38.8 cm)

Sir Hudson Fysh KBE DFC (1895-1974) was one of Australia's great aviation administrators. Born in Launceston, Tasmania, he enlisted at the beginning of World War I and served in the Australian Flying Corps as an observer, winning the Distinguished Flying Cross. In 1919 he qualified as a pilot. Later that year he was commissioned by the government to survey the Darwin to Longreach section of the Britain-Australia Air Race, which lack of funds had prevented him from entering. In November 1920 Fysh and Pat McGinnis, who had driven with him on the survey, joined two others to form Queensland and Northern Territory Air Services Ltd (QANTAS). Fysh became managing director of the company in 1923, but continued to work as a pilot over the next seven years as QANTAS established various routes and functions - including an air ambulance service - in Queensland. In 1934, in partnership with Imperial Airways, QANTAS began to operate the Singapore-Australia air route, trading as Qantas Empire Airways (QEA). Six years later Fysh became a director of Tasman Empire Airways Ltd, which flew to and from New Zealand. Fysh oversaw further expansion of QEA, and its purchase by the Australian government, before retiring as the company's managing director in 1955 and chairman in 1966. Between 1965 and 1973, he published three autobiographical volumes covering the history of Qantas; a biography of Henry Reed, a key figure in the early development of Launceston; and book on trout fishing, Round the Bend in the Stream.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Danina Anderson, daughter of Max Dupain 2017
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Artist and subject

Max Dupain (age 40 in 1951)

Sir Hudson Fysh KBE DFC (age 56 in 1951)

Subject professions

Business, trades and industry

Donated by

Danina Anderson (34 portraits)

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

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.

Dupain detective

Magazine article by Johanna McMahon, 2019

Johanna McMahon revels in history and mystery in pursuit of a suite of unknown portrait subjects.

Home and away

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2009

Sir William Dobell painted the portraits of Sir Charles Lloyd Jones and Sir Hudson Fysh, who did much to promote the image of Australia in this country and abroad.

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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.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency