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Carla Zampatti AC (b. 1942) came to Australia with her Italian family in 1950. From childhood, she aspired to a career as a clothing designer; her first collection was assembled when she was 23, in 1965. By 1970, she had established Carla Zampatti Ltd and in 1972 she opened her first store, in Surry Hills. Stores in Mosman, Double Bay and Sydney CBD followed. In 1980 she was named the inaugural Qantas Bulletin Businesswoman of the Year. Between 1993 and 2009 Zampatti served on many boards including those of the Australian Quality Council, the Woolmark Corporation, the Australian Graduate School of Management, British American Tobacco Australasia, Westfield Holdings and McDonald’s Australia. She was chair of the board of SBS from 1999 to 2009 and has been a director of the Australian Multicultural Foundation since 2005. One of six designers featured on the ‘Australian Legends’ postage stamp series in 2005, she currently has boutiques in each state and in the ACT, and her garments are sold in selected David Jones stores.

This photograph, originally taken for Harper’s Bazaar, was reproduced on the cover of Zampatti’s autobiography, My Life, My Look in 2015.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Purchased 2016
Accession number: 2016.51