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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.

What's on

Wednesday 20 September – Saturday 30 September 2023

Play on (A portrait of Neale Daniher)
Play on (A portrait of Neale Daniher)
Play on (A portrait of Neale Daniher)
Play on (A portrait of Neale Daniher)

Collection Highlights Tour

2:15pm, Daily until Sun 31 Dec

Take a 30 minute tour of the Portrait Gallery exploring the collection and the building.

Bookings available
Marea Gazzard
Marea Gazzard
Marea Gazzard
Marea Gazzard

The Iconoclasts

In Gallery Three

Exhibition open every day

Australian portraiture of the mid-twentieth century was rich with the influence of European modernism, exemplified by the work of artists including Arthur Boyd, Judy Cassab and Clifton Pugh.

Mary Chomley
Mary Chomley
Mary Chomley
Mary Chomley

The Cosmopolitans

In Gallery Two

Exhibition closes 31 March

Spanning the 1880s to the 1930s, this collection display celebrates the innovations in art – and life – introduced by the generation of Australians who travelled to London and Paris for experience and inspiration in the decades either side of 1900.

Self portrait, 2022 RJ Parker
Self portrait, 2022 RJ Parker
Self portrait, 2022 RJ Parker
Self portrait, 2022 RJ Parker

Gulgawarnigu

Thinking of something, someone

Exhibition closes 2 October

In partnership with Big hART we are proud to present Gulgawarnigu - Thinking of something, someone, a national presentation of digital artworks created from Ngarluma country leramagadu (Roebourne), in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.

Ruby (left view), 2022 Shea Kirk
Ruby (left view), 2022 Shea Kirk
Ruby (left view), 2022 Shea Kirk
Ruby (left view), 2022 Shea Kirk

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2023

Exhibition closes 2 October

The exhibition is selected from a national field of entries, reflecting the distinctive vision of Australia's aspiring and professional portrait photographers and the unique nature of their subjects.

Bookings available
Brave New World, 2022 Heidi Margocsy
Brave New World, 2022 Heidi Margocsy
Brave New World, 2022 Heidi Margocsy
Brave New World, 2022 Heidi Margocsy

National Photographic Portrait Prize highlights tour

11:15am, Daily until Mon 2 Oct

After you have booked your paid exhibition ticket, join us in the Gallery for a 30-minute tour of the National Photographic Portrait Prize to hear more about the artists’ vision and stories of their subjects.

Bookings available
An Afternoon (Aunty Jenny Munro at the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy)
An Afternoon (Aunty Jenny Munro at the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy)
An Afternoon (Aunty Jenny Munro at the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy)
An Afternoon (Aunty Jenny Munro at the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy)

This is my place

In Gallery Four

Exhibition open every day

We all have places where we feel at ease, a sense of belonging, of ownership, of relaxation, of self. Given the opportunity, portraitists love to place their sitters in an environment where they are most at home.

Self portrait
Self portrait
Self portrait
Self portrait

Self portrait: Myself and I

In Gallery Five

Exhibition open every day

Encompassing works created over the past 80 years, this selection of portraits from the Gallery’s collection celebrates inventiveness and diversity in approaches to self portraiture.

Cathy Freeman
Cathy Freeman
Cathy Freeman
Cathy Freeman

Frocked up

In Gallery Six

Exhibition open every day

The selection of works in Frocked up richly demonstrates the interconnectedness of costume and portraiture – and the many ways in which artists have employed the representation of dress to powerful, insightful effect.

James, Rebecca and Sam Mapu
James, Rebecca and Sam Mapu
James, Rebecca and Sam Mapu
James, Rebecca and Sam Mapu

Time and light

In Gallery Seven

Exhibition closes 24 September

This sample of 56 photographs takes in some of the smallest photographs we own and some of the largest, some of the earliest and some of the most recent, as well as multiple photographic processes from daguerreotypes to digital media.

Art cart
Art cart
Art cart
Art cart

Art Cart

Daily, drop-in activity

Shake off that frosty winter, dodge the magpies, and get creative with us this spring! Drop-in any time with family and friends for free craft activities.

Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)

Little faces

10:30am, Wed 20 Sep

Do we have a treat for the smaller humans in your life! Little Faces is for babies and toddlers (with their grown up) to play, sing and have fun discovering a portrait together.

Bookings required
Art storage racks
Art storage racks
Art storage racks
Art storage racks

Fresh frames and famous faces

3:00pm, Wed 20 Sep

Bree Pickering, Director of the National Portrait Gallery, invites you to an afternoon presentation of new acquisitions from the past year.

Bookings required
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)

Little faces

10:30am, Thu 21 Sep

Do we have a treat for the smaller humans in your life! Little Faces is for babies and toddlers (with their grown up) to play, sing and have fun discovering a portrait together.

Bookings required
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)
Practising the Minuet (Miss Hilda Spong)

Little faces

9:30am, 10:30am, Fri 22 Sep

Do we have a treat for the smaller humans in your life! Little Faces is for babies and toddlers (with their grown up) to play, sing and have fun discovering a portrait together.

Bookings required
Joseph Brown
Joseph Brown
Joseph Brown
Joseph Brown

Portrait Play

Arty Animals

10:30am, Mon 25 Sep until Fri 29 Sep

Come on an animal adventure these school holidays and meet some furry friends, cool critters and pet portraits. We’ll be looking, chatting and creating our way through the Gallery, and please, don’t feed the animals!

Bookings required
Margaret Fulton
Margaret Fulton
Margaret Fulton
Margaret Fulton

Virtual Highlight Tour

Back in Time for a Dinner Party

12:30pm, Tue 26 Sep
Live online

Dig out your Woman’s Weekly Dinner Party Cookbook, sit down with an after-dinner mint and enjoy this week’s tour.

Bookings required
The Chalk Rainbow by Deborah Kelly and Gwynneth Jones
The Chalk Rainbow by Deborah Kelly and Gwynneth Jones
The Chalk Rainbow by Deborah Kelly and Gwynneth Jones
The Chalk Rainbow by Deborah Kelly and Gwynneth Jones

Story Time

The Chalk Rainbow

10:30am, Wed 27 Sep

Celebrate difference and diversity by listening to a reading of The Chalk Rainbow by Deborah Kelly and Gwynneth Jones. After hearing this story about Zane who has Autism, you’ll have the chance to make a colourful creative response.

Bookings required

More events

Sunday 1 October – Wednesday 11 October 2023
© National Portrait Gallery 2023
King Edward Terrace, Parkes
Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia

Phone +61 2 6102 7000
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 past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency