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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.

George Andronicus, 1985 (printed 2018)

Gary Ede

inkjet print on paper (sheet: 43.0 cm x 29.9 cm, image: 26.0 cm x 39.1 cm)

George Andronicus (b. 1932), coffee merchant, was the son of John Andronicus, who came to Australia from Kythera at the turn of the twentieth century. John Andronicus, son of a fisherman, already had five brothers in Australia, and joined them in their burgeoning coffee business in 1910. Naturalised in 1924, he married in 1928; eight years later, he bought his brothers out. With his wife Kathleen, he sold chocolates and coffee, importing beans from Arabia, Africa, India Brazil and New Guinea, roasting and grinding them for retail and wholesale trades, working 14 hours a day seven days a week, closing the shop at 5pm then going to the factory to hand-dip chocolates. Soon the merchandise at their George Street shop expanded to continental foods such as olives, cheeses and halva. The couple continued to run the shop until 1973, when it was knocked down to make way for the Regent Hotel. The couple’s sons, George and Charles, began working in the shop in school holidays. In the early 1960s George aand Charles formed the wholesale business Andronicus Coffee Pty Ltd. In 1984 Charles sold the coffee business to George, who sold it, in turn, to Nestlé in 1986.

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

Accession number: 2018.115

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Gary Ede (age 39 in 1985)

George Andronicus (age 53 in 1985)

Related information

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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 both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.