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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 Saints

1978 (printed 2018)
Gary Ede

inkjet print on paper (sheet: 50.8 cm x 50.8 cm, image: 45.0 cm x 46.1 cm, frame: depth 4.2 cm)

The Saints, formed in the mid-1970s in Brisbane, has been described as ‘one of the most sporadically brilliant, frustratingly uneven and most undeniably important bands Australia has ever produced’. Widely credited with releasing a punk song before the Sex Pistols or the Clash ever did, the band was founded in 1974 by Brisbane boys Chris Bailey, Ivor Hay and Ed Kuepper. First playing together as Kid Galahad and the Eternals, they were joined by Kym Bradshaw and became the Saints, playing some gigs in their own shared house - which they called the 76 Club - before releasing ‘(I’m) Stranded’ in 1976. The song was taken up by a UK label and reviewed by Sounds as ‘Single of this and every week’. Late in 1976 the Saints supported AC/DC on tour. Having undergone several personnel changes, they relocated to Sydney before moving to the UK in mid-1977. Bob Geldof is said to have asserted that ‘Rock music in the seventies was changed by three bands – the Sex Pistols, the Ramones and the Saints.’

Ede's photograph shows Ed Kuepper, Alasdair ‘Algy’ Ward, Ivor Hay and Chris Bailey in London in the band’s 1978 iteration. In 1979 Kuepper returned to Australia where he founded the cult band the Laughing Clowns and later the Aints; he has had a very successful career in live performance and recording, and a park in Brisbane is named after him. The so-called Saints have been through countless lineups in the ensuing decades (their Wikipedia entry lists 36 former members) with Chris Bailey the only constant; Bailey has also performed solo and in collaboration with other major Australian musicians. Algy Ward, who played on the Saints’ third single ‘This Perfect Day’ still performs in the UK. Ivor Hay moved out of the music business but has played in reunions of the band from time to time.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Wayne Williams 2018
© Gary Ede

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

Gary Ede (age 32 in 1978)

Supported by

Wayne Williams (30 portraits supported)

Related information

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Permanent collection catalogue

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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 Look

Previous exhibition, 2019

Featuring striking photographic portraits of contemporary figures from the National Portrait Gallery collection, The Look is an aesthetic treat with a lashing of je ne sais quoi.

The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance

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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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