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The National Portrait Gallery of Australia (NPGA) 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.

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

Tamara Tchinarova, 1938

Max Dupain

gelatin silver photograph (image/sheet: 50.2 cm x 40.5 cm)

Tamara Tchinarova (1919-2017) was a pupil of the great Russian teacher Olga Preobrajenska, formerly of the Imperial Russian Ballet. She went to Roumanian Bessarabia soon after the Russian Revolution, and at seventeen became one of the original 'baby ballerinas' of de Basil's 1932 company. Tchinarova came to Australia on the first and second tours of the Russian ballets. However, at the conclusion of the second tour she elected to remain here. In about 1939 she married the young actor Peter Finch, who had recently made his film debut in Dad and Dave Come to Town. During the 1940s she contributed significantly to the development of fledgling Australian dance companies including the Kirsova Ballet and the Borovansky Ballet. After she retired from dancing she worked as a Russian/English interpreter for touring ballet companies, including the Australian Ballet, and as a dance writer.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Danina Anderson, daughter of Max Dupain 2018
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Accession number: 2018.70

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Max Dupain (age 27 in 1938)

Tamara Tchinarova (age 19 in 1938)

Subject professions

Performing arts

Donated by

Danina Anderson (34 portraits)

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The National Portrait Gallery of Australia (NPGA) 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.

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