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Damon, singer, 2000 by Julian Opie

Movement is my radar

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2015

Michael Desmond charts the path of portraiture, arriving at Julian Opie’s digital realm.

Daniel Whitechurch and Laura McKellar, Fitzroy, Melbourne, Australia, 2009 by Nikki Toole

Skater Portraits by Nikki Toole

Previous exhibition, 2012

Nikki Toole has travelled the world to photograph skateboarders.

Errol Flynn, 1938 (printed 2008) George Hurrell
Errol Flynn, 1938 (printed 2008) George Hurrell
Errol Flynn, 1938 (printed 2008) George Hurrell

Errol Flynn, 1938 (printed 2008) George Hurrell

Portrait, gelatin silver photograph

Gift of Michael Desmond 2012
National Portrait Gallery, Canberra

Staffordshire bull terrier belonging to the Rev. John Gower, 1851

Essential portraiture

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2011

Michael Desmond in conversation with University of Houston professor of philosophy Cynthia Freeland.

Clifton Pugh painting in the studio, 1974 Fred Williams

Painting mates

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2011

Michael Desmond discusses Fred Williams' portraits of friends, artist Clifton Pugh, David Aspden and writer Stephen Murray-Smith, and the stylistic connections between his portraits and landscapes.

Neil Murray, 2008 Peter Hudson

True fella

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2011

Michael Desmond profiles the Australian songwriter and performer Neil Murray and his contribution to Australian music.

Martin Schoeller 2008

The God-shaped hole

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2010

Exploring the photographs of Martin Schoeller, Michael Desmond delves into the uneasy pact that exists between celebrity and the camera.

Study for self-portrait, 1963

Inside outside

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2010

Michael Desmond explores the portraiture of Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud.

Lucy, 2001

Technical terminology

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2010

Michael Desmond introduces some of the ideas behind the exhibition Present Tense: An imagined grammar of portraiture in the digital age.

Lucy, 2001

Present Tense An Imagined Grammar of Portraiture in the Digital Age

Previous exhibition, 2010

Technology has been a major influence on art since the invention of the camera, particularly in the field of portraiture.

Edward Paine Butler, c. 1845 Thomas Griffiths Wainewright

Poison pen

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2010

Michael Desmond examines the career of the eighteenth-century suspected poisoner and portrait artist Thomas Griffiths Wainewright.

Elizabeth (Murray) 2000

Extremely generous and incredibly close

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2010

Michael Desmond examines the daguerreotype portraits created by American artist Chuck Close.

Dr Brown and Green Old Time Waltz, 1983 Harold Thornton

Where the wild things are

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Michael Desmond explores the complex portrait of Dr Bob Brown by Harold 'The Kangaroo' Thornton.

Blue Mountain, Owner, Trainer, Jockey, James Scobie, 1887 Frederick Woodhouse

Sure thing

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Blue Mountain, Owner, Trainer, Jockey, James Scobie 1887 by Frederick Woodhouse Snr. is a portrait of James Scobie, well known jockey and eminent horse trainer.

Frame from Self portrait, 2008

I walk the line

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Bruce Petty's animated self portrait captures a life's journey compressed into a few minutes.

Aung San Suu, 2009 by Shepard Fairey

OBEY Shepard Fairey Posters

Previous exhibition, 2009

Shepard Fairey is best known for his iconic poster Obama/Hope which he made in support of Barack Obama for the 2008 US election.

Potters' Portrait Pot, 2009 Hermannsburg Potters

Of human clay

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

The first collaborative commission has arrived. It's a self portrait, it's ceramic and it's from Hermannsburg.

Nicole Kidman, New York, 2003 Irving Penn

Penn on paper

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Michael Desmond discusses Irving Penn's photographic portrait of Nicole Kidman.

The Gladiators (Norm Provan and Arthur Summons), 1963 (printed 1970s) John O'Gready

Who's that?

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Michael Desmond discusses the iconic picture of two Rugby League players which became known as 'The Gladiators'.

Portrait of Truganini, daughter of the Chief of Bruny Island, Van Diemens Land, c. 1835

Black and white history

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

English artist Benjamin Duterrau took up the cause of the Indigenous peoples of Tasmania with his detailed and sympathetic renderings.

Vanity Fair, April, 2004

International issue

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Michael Desmond looks at the history of the Vanity Fair magazine in conjunction with the exhibition Vanity Fair Portraits: Photographs 1913-2008

Guns and roses, 2006

Obey

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Michael Desmond investigates the street art of Shepard Fairey, who was catapulted to fame during the 2008 presidential election with his resonant image of Barack Obama.

Irina Baronova (handing on the baton), 2007 Jenny Sages

Handing on the baton

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2009

Michael Desmond explores the life of ballerina Irina Baranova through the portrait by Australian artist Jenny Sages.

Senator Bonner, 1990 Robert Campbell Jnr

Black tie or wombat: How formal should I go?

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2008

Michael Desmond discusses the portrait of Senator Neville Bonner by Robert Campbell Jnr.

Facing Australia, Composite portrait: Facing St Lucia, 2003

Conflicting images

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2008

Michael Desmond reveals the origins of composite portraits and their evolution in the pursuit of the ideal.

Alexander Pearce
executed for murder
July 19th 1824

Public hanging

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2008

As a convict Thomas Bock was required to sketch executed murders for science; as a free man, fashionable society portraits.

Lindy Lee - Birth and Death, 2006 by Robert Scott-Mitchell

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2007

Previous exhibition, 2007

Photography is the most pervasive and popular medium for portraiture and makes a natural fit with the Gallery, being a natural extension of the Gallery's longstanding commitment to photography as a contemporary portrait medium.

The hunting lodge, 2007

Seduce Amuse Entertain

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2007

Michael Desmond profiles a handful of the entrants in first National Photographic Portrait Prize and notes emerging themes and categories.

Frank Fenner AC CMG MBE, 2007 Jude Rae

The highest honour

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2007

Bringing eminent scientist Frank Fenner and artist Jude Rae together for the National Portrait Gallery commission was like matchmaking.

Portrait of a Man (Fred Williams), 1958

Head, hand, heart

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2007

An extensive selection of portraits by John Brack were on display at the National Portrait Gallery in late 2007.

Bee Miles, 1976 Roderick Shaw

Good, bad and the ugly

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2007

Michael Desmond explores what makes a portrait subject significant.

The last of England 1855

Pre-Raphaelite Profile

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2006

In 2006 the National Portrait Gallery acquired a splendid portrait of Victoria's first governor, Lieutenant Governor Charles Joseph La Trobe by Thomas Woolner.

Lauren in Red, 2003

Is the truth of portraiture vested exclusively in likeness?

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2006

Curator Michael Desmond introduces the exhibition Truth and Likeness, an investigation of the importance of likeness to portraiture.

Self Portrait with fruit, 2004

Tender tragedies

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2006

George Foxhill's self portraits were the subject of a small focus display at the National Portrait Gallery in 2006.

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, 2006

The painter and the princess

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2006

Michael Desmond interviews Ralph Heimans about his portrait of Crown Princess Mary of Denmark.

Dr Peter Farrell, 2001 Salvatore Zofrea OAM

Giving and getting

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2006

The exhibition Portraits for Posterity celebrates gifts to the Gallery, of purchases made with donated funds, and testifies to the generosity and community spirit of Australians.

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