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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.

Sidney Myer, 1936

Paul Montford
Portrait, cast bronze on wooden base

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Coles Myer Ltd 2002
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Four from the 30s

Magazine article by Andrew Sayers AM, 2003

Australia's tradition of sculpted portraits stretches back to the early decades of the nineteenth century and continues to sustain a group of dedicated sculptors.

Study for a portrait of Dame Merlyn Myer DBE, n.d.

William Dargie
Portrait, oil on masonite

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the Estate of Marion Orme Page 2016

Sir Kenneth Myer DSC AC, 1985

Michael Meszaros
Portrait, cast bronze medallion on wood plaque

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Dr Ray Marginson AM 2001

Sidney Nolan

In their own words
In their own words

Recorded 1962

Self portrait, 1988

Sidney Nolan
Portrait, oil on composition board

Gift of Hon RL Hunter QC 2006. Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program.

Sidney Nolan, Western Australia, 1962 (printed 2000)

David Moore
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2001. Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program.
The series 'David Moore: From Face to Face' was acquired as a gift of the artist and with financial assistance from Timothy Fairfax AC and L Gordon Darling AC CMG 2001.

Sidney Nolan, 1964

Axel Poignant
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2003

Sir Sidney Kidman, 1932

Samuel Woolf
Portrait, charcoal heightened with white chalk

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2009

Self Creation

Magazine article by Andrew Sayers AM, 2006

Former National Portrait Gallery Director, Andrew Sayers recalls meeting iconic Australian artist Sidney Nolan.

 

The fat of the land

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2009

Sir Sidney Kidman (1857-1935) is inscribed in Australian legend as the ‘Cattle King’. 

Me Myself I

Magazine article by Andrew Sayers AM, 2001

Andrew Sayers explores the self-portraits created by Australian artist Sidney Nolan.

Sidney Kidman and Arthur Triggs, c. 1914

Falk Studios
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by The Ian Potter Foundation 2007

Sidney Nolan and Patrick White, Adelaide Arts Festival, c. 1964 (printed 2015)

Robert McFarlane
Portrait, inkjet print on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 1999

Artist and wife near Arthurs Seat, 1969

Through blue eyes

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2009

Works by Arthur Boyd and Sidney Nolan bring the desert, the misty seashore and the hot Monaro plains to exhibition Open Air: Portraits in the landscape.

A.J. Fischer, 1920s

Sidney Riley Studios
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2012

Cultural kaleidoscope

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2006

The complex connections between four creative Australians; Patrick White, Sidney Nolan, Robert Helpmann and Peter Sculthorpe.

Sidney Nolan and Robert Helpmann at Bonython Gallery, Adelaide Arts Festival, c. 1964 (printed 2015)

Robert McFarlane
Portrait, inkjet print on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 1999

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Mr Sidney Myer AM appointed inaugural President of the National Portrait Gallery’s Foundation

12 March 2015
Archived media releases 2015

Dr Helen Nugent AO, Chairman, National Portrait Gallery Board announced today the appointment of Mr Sidney Myer AM as the inaugural President of the newly established National Portrait Gallery Foundation.

Brian Quinn, Coles Myer,

Joe Greenberg
Portrait, watercolour, crayon, coloured pencil, fibre-tipped pen and gouache on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2001

Honour board

Support your Portrait Gallery

The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges and thanks all its supporters.

Nolan Heads

Previous exhibition, 2001

Nolan Heads will focus on the portraiture of one of Australia's most original painters and one of the few to have achieved an international reputation

Dr Helen Nugent AO

The Board

Governance & Board

The Board oversees the Gallery's strategic directions, objectives and governance.

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Self portrait with Bottlebrush, 1991

Margaret Olley AC
Portrait, oil on board

Purchased with funds provided by Marilyn Darling AC and the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2021

Portrait of William Manning, c. 1821

Henry Bone
Portrait, enamel on copper plate

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2017

Portrait 1

September - November 2001
Magazine

The first edition of Portrait Magazine features an article on Sidney Nolan's portraiture by former Gallery Director, Andrew Sayers.

Portrait 20

June - August 2006
Magazine

This issue of Portrait Magazine features Dame Nellie Melba and Frances Alda, Leigh Bowery, Karin Catt, Sidney Nolan and more.

Sid Myer AM in front of Helena Rubinstein in a red brocade Balenciaga gown 1957 by Graham Sutherland. Purchased with funds provided by Marilyn Darling AC, Tim Fairfax AC and the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2015.

Foundation

Our team

Chaired by Sid Myer AM, the National Portrait Gallery Foundation aims to grow a dynamic culture of giving such that donations and support may sustain ambitious Gallery projects into the future.

Sir Norman Coles,

William Dargie
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Coles Myer Ltd 2002
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Sir Kenneth Coles, c. 1979

William Dargie
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Coles Myer Ltd 2002
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Sir Edgar Coles, c. 1970

William Dargie
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Coles Myer Ltd 2002
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Portrait 32

June - August 2009
Magazine

This issue features Vanity Fair, Nancy Bird Walton, William Barak, Sidney Kidman, Benjamin Duterrau's portraits of the Indigenous peoples of Tasmania, and more.

Florence Cardell-Oliver,

Broothorn Studios
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper laid on photography studio backing board

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Chris Nielsen 2016

Sid Myer AM

Foundation Members

Foundation

Chairman Mr Sid Myer AM, Mrs Marilyn Darling AC, Mr Tim Fairfax AC, Mr John Liangis, Dr Helen Nugent AO, Mr Ross Adler AC, and Mr Tim Bednall.

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Supporters

$5,000 - $9,999
Honour board

Top of the pops to golden guitars

General content

The Seekers, John Farnham and Lee Kernaghan

Portrait of Professors Margaret Gardner and Glyn Davis, 2017

Jacqueline Mitelman
Portrait, type C photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Commissioned with funds provided by Jim and Barbara Higgins, Sir Roderick Carnegie AC, Rupert Myer AO and Annabel Myer, Louise and Martyn Myer Foundation, Peter and Ruth McMullin, Diana Carlton, Professor Derek Denton AC, Harold Mitchell AC, Peter Jopling AM QC, Andrew and Liz Mackenzie, Patricia Patten, Tamie Fraser AO, Bruce Parncutt and Robin Campbell, Lauraine Diggins, Steven Skala AO and Lousje Skala 2017

The Fairfax Gift

Magazine article by Andrew Sayers AM, 2003

This article examines the portraits gifted to the National Portrait Gallery by Fairfax Holdings in 2003.

Sid Myer AM

Foundation members announced

18 May 2015
Archived media releases 2015

The newly-established National Portrait Gallery Foundation met for its inaugural meeting last Friday 15 May in Canberra.

Sir George Coles, 1935

W B McInnes
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Coles Myer Ltd 2002
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

In their own words

Audio-guide
Apps

In their own words is an audio-guide with a difference. We let the portraits of these remarkable Australians speak for themselves.

Photograph of Jade Breen by Cathy Breen

Bogong Cluster

Socially connected, physically distant
Event, Daily throughout the Gallery

In these uncertain times, with physical gatherings restricted, we can all still recall major events such as the bogong moth migration, and remain connected to each other through nature.

Peter O'Shaughnessy, 1947

Howard Matthews
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 1999

Sid Myer AM in front of Helena Rubinstein in a red brocade Balenciaga gown 1957 by Graham Sutherland. Purchased with funds provided by Marilyn Darling AC, Tim Fairfax AC and the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2015.

Foundation

Support your Portrait Gallery

The Foundation encourages gifts, donations, bequests and legacies in service of the Gallery's mission.

Livingston Hopkins, n.d.

an unknown artist
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2008

Self portrait, 1894

Livingston Hopkins
Portrait, etching on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Ross A Field 2008

The Merioola Group, 1940s

Alec Murray
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Patrick Corrigan AM 2008
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

John Perceval, 1985

Rick Amor
Portrait, black conte on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2005
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

John Perceval, 1985

Rick Amor
Portrait, black conte on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2005
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Ruby Hunter, 1996 (printed 2012)

Jacqueline Mitelman
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2012

Portrait of Heidi Middleton and Sarah-Jane Clarke (Sass & Bide), 2008

Deborah Paauwe
Portrait, inkjet print on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Commissioned with funds provided by Marilyn Darling AC 2008

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John Perceval, 1999

Thomas de Kessler
Portrait, ink, coloured pencil, gouache, crayon and fibre-tipped pen on single mount board with gold coloured ink border

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Thomas de Kessler 2001

Tim Burstall, Andamooka (filming of the Last of the Knucklemen), c. 1979

Rennie Ellis
Portrait, type C photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2006

Margaret Seares, 2018

by Cherry Hood
General content

Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

Announcing.... In their own words

24 November 2020
Media

Inspiring Australians tell their own stories in a unique new gallery audio tour, developed in collaboration with the National Library of Australia.

Inner Worlds

Portraits and Psychology
Previous exhibition, 2011

Portraits of Australia’s pioneering psychologists and artworks by artists fascinated by the subconscious mind.

What the tree saw: David Foster, 2018

Jacqui Stockdale
Portrait, inkjet print and oil on canvas, mounted with inset axe pendant

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

Margaret Seares, 2018

Cherry Hood
Portrait, watercolour on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

Michelle Simmons, 2018

by Selina Ou
General content

Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

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Donors

$10,000 - $49,999
Honour board

Inside Heide’s lives

It's Complicated

Happiness to heartache

What the tree saw: David Foster, 2018

by Jacqui Stockdale
General content

Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

Arthur Boyd, 1962

Axel Poignant
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2003

James Mollison, c. 1973 (printed 2004)

Wesley Stacey
Portrait, type C photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of James Mollison AO 2004

James Mollison, c. 1973 (printed 2004)

Wesley Stacey
Portrait, type C photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of James Mollison AO 2004

Helena Rubinstein in a red brocade Balenciaga gown, 1957

Graham Sutherland
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Marilyn Darling AC, Tim Fairfax AC and the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2015

Portrait of Tam Purves, 1958

John Brack
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2012

Sir Arthur Coles, c. 1971

William Dargie
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Coles Myer Ltd 2002
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Tan Le, 2018

by John Tsiavis
General content

Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

Tan Le, 2018

John Tsiavis
Portrait, transparency between mirror substrates in LED lightbox

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

John Perceval, 1985

Rick Amor
Portrait, pencil on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2005
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Geoffrey Tozer, 1966

Rollo Thomson
Portrait, oil on canvas board

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the Estate of Geoffrey Tozer 2012

Top of their game

Nobel Laureates
General content

Macfarlane Burnet and Patrick White

Charles Haddon Chambers, 1921

Ralph Barton
Portrait, ink and watercolour on cardboard

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2010

Michelle Simmons, 2018

Selina Ou
Portrait, inkjet print on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018

Murray Bail, 1980-1981

Fred Williams
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of an anonymous donor 1999
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

In the mirror: self portrait with Joy Hester, 1939

Albert Tucker
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 1999. Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program.

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Donald Friend at Owl Creek, 1983

Lawrence Daws
Portrait, ink and charcoal on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Lawrence Daws 2012
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

image not online

Donald Friend, 1987

Greg Weight
Portrait, gelatin silver photograph on paper

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Patrick Corrigan AM 2004
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program

Open Air

Portraits in the Landscape
Previous exhibition, 2008

Open Air is an exhibition of portraits of Australians in environments of particular significance to them.

Caroline Jones, 1978

David Campbell
Portrait, oil on canvas

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Elizabeth Campbell-MacKenzie on behalf of the family of David Campbell 2012

Before Too Long

Magazine article by Simon Elliott, 2004

The story behind the creation of the portrait of singer-songwriter Paul Kelly by the artist Jon Campbell.

Welcome home, Captain Bligh

27 March 2015
Archived media releases 2015

The National Portrait Gallery will, next Tuesday, unveil an exciting new acquisition of irrefutable importance to all Australians. Portrait of William Bligh, in master’s uniform c. 1776, attributed to John Webber, is one of the earliest portraits of the contentious, historical figure, and extends the Gallery’s remarkable collection of early colonial portraits.

Gail Kelly, 2018

by Paul Newton
General content

Commissioned with funds provided by Westpac Group and Optus 2018

Rennie Ellis

Aussies All
Previous exhibition, 2006

Rennie Ellis: Aussies All is a celebration of the life and work of the late Australian photographer Rennie Ellis.

Portraits for Posterity

Previous exhibition, 2006

Drawn from some of the many donations made to the Gallery's collection, the exhibition Portraits for Posterity pays homage both to the remarkable (and varied) group of Australians who are portrayed in the portraits and the generosity of the many donors who have presented them to the Gallery.

Equation of a life – a portrait of Derek Denton

9 September 2016
Archived media releases 2016

The National Portrait Gallery, has welcomed the newest portrait commission of Emeritus Professor Derek Denton AC by Evert Ploeg.

Luke Scibberas, Hill End NSW, 2004

Artists' space

Magazine article by John McDonald, 2007

Studio: Australian Painters Photographed by R. Ian Lloyd presents 61 of some of Australia’s most respected and significant painters working in the studio environment.

To Look Within

Self Portraits in Australia
Previous exhibition, 2004

This exhibition is the first comprehensive survey of self-portraits in Australia, from the colonial period to the present

Depth of Field

Portrait Photography from the Collection
Previous exhibition, 2004

Over the last five years the National Portrait Gallery has developed a collection of portrait photographs that reflects both the strength and diversity of Australian achievement as well as the talents of our photographers.

Uncommon Australians

The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling
Previous exhibition, 2015

This exhibition showcases portraits acquired through the generosity of the National Portrait Gallery’s Founding Patrons, L Gordon Darling AC CMG and Marilyn Darling AC.

Philanthropic donations enable otherwise unobtainable acquisition

20 October 2016
Archived media releases 2016

A magnanimous portrait of Helena Rubinstein has been acquired for the National Portrait Gallery’s collection.

The Stories Beneath

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2005
The Alcoa World Alumina Australia gift.

Chance encounter

Magazine article by Joanna Gilmour, 2009

Joanna Gilmour explores the life and times of one of Melbourne's early socialites, Jessie Eyre Williams.

Somewhere to hang your cap

Magazine article by Beatrice Thompson, 2007

A pair of portraits by John Brack; Portrait of Kym Bonython and Portrait of Mr Bonython's speedway cap combine to create a quirky depiction of their subject.

Self Portrait in red shirt, 1937 by Arthur Boyd

Arthur as Alyosha?

Magazine article by Patrick McCaughey, 2015

Patrick McCaughey explores a striking Boyd self portrait.

The possessed, 1942 by Albert Tucker

The inner voice

Magazine article by Dr Christopher Chapman, 2011

Dr Christopher Chapman, curator of Inner Worlds: Portraits & Psychology looks at Albert Tucker's Heidelberg military hospital portraits.

The mind's eye

Magazine article by Dr Christopher Chapman, 2017

Christopher Chapman takes a trip through the doors of perception, arriving at the junction of surrealism and psychoanalysis.

Earth to earth

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2013

Dr Sarah Engledow discusses the recent gift of works by David Campbell.

Friends and Acquaintances

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2005

Dr. Sarah Engledow discusses a collection of drawings and prints by the Victorian artist Rick Amor acquired in 2005.

Charlie as he was, 2007

I'm not there

Magazine article by Dr Christopher Chapman, 2008
Christopher Chapman looks at some contemporary portraits that explore the construction of identity.
Dr Christopher Chapman

The art of Inner Worlds

Lecture, 7 May 2011
General content

Dr Christopher Chapman NPG Curator of Inner Worlds explains the development of an exhibition that spans from Surrealism to contemporary art.

Suave

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2010

Charles Haddon Chambers the Australian-born playboy playwright settled permanently in London in 1880 but never lost his Australian stance when satirising the English.

Recollections of a sinologist sitter

Magazine article by Professor Stephen FitzGerald AO, 2016

Professor Stephen Fitzgerald, Australia’s first Ambassador to China, traces the historical course from sino-australian cultural engagement to a maturing Australian identity.

Sandor Ferenczis 50th birthday dinner, Budapest, 1923

Less than six degrees of separation

Magazine article by Dr Anne Sanders, 2011

Anne Sanders finds connections in Inner Worlds between Hungarian expatriates and the development of psychoanalysis in Australia.

Kevin Rudd

An Australian story

Magazine article by Hon. Kevin Rudd, 2009

In his speech launching the new National Portrait Gallery building on 3 December 2008, then Prime Minister Kevin Rudd set the Gallery in a national and historical context.

Diamond Doll

Magazine article by Karen Vickery, 2016

Karen Vickery delights in a thespian thread of the Australian yarn.

Big bouquet of Blackmans

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2013

Dr. Sarah Engledow explores the context surrounding Charles Blackman's portrait of Judith Wright, Jack McKinney and their daughter Meredith.

In good company

Magazine article by Joanna Gilmour, 2015

Jean Appleton’s 1965 self portrait makes a fine addition to the National Portrait Gallery’s collection writes Joanna Gilmour.

First-Class Marksman, 1946 by Sidney Nolan

Money for Myth

Magazine article by Jane Raffan, 2015

Australian character on the market by Jane Raffan.

Getting a head

Magazine article by Alexandra Roginski, 2015

Alexandra Roginski gets a feel for phrenology’s fundamentals.

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Portrait Donors

Listed by year
Honour board

Study in scarlet

Magazine article by Angus Trumble, 2018

Angus Trumble reflects on the force of nature that was Helena Rubinstein.

Thrown together

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2009

Shipmates for years, James Cook and Joseph Banks each kept a journal but neither man shed light on their relationship.

Lesley Harding

Faces of war

Lecture, 14 May 2011
General content

Lesley Harding, Curator, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne explores Albert Tucker’s experience of World War II, his interests in the intersection between psychology and creativity, and their influence on his portrait making.

Painting writing

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2007

Dr Sarah Engledow explores the portraits of writers held in the National Portrait Gallery's collection.

Rick Amor: 21 Portraits

General content

Sarah Engledow chronicles Rick Amor's work and accomplishments in this extensive essay in conjunction with the exhibition Rick Amor: 21 Portraits.

© National Portrait Gallery 2021
King Edward Terrace, Parkes
Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia

Phone +61 2 6102 7000
Fax +61 2 6102 7001
ABN: 54 74 277 1196

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