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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.

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Jack Lang

1970
Adam Martin

oil on canvas (96.5 cm x 80.3 cm)

John Thomas (Jack) Lang (1875-1975) was a pugnacious estate agent who was Labor premier of NSW from 1925 to 1927 and 1930 to 1932. Lang's reputation as a reformer stems from his first period in office, when he introduced the widows' pension, child endowment and a Workers Compensation Act. The working-class 'Big Fella' aroused so much fear amongst the middle class that a paramilitary organisation, the New Guard, was formed to protect the State; it was a member of this New Guard who beat Lang to the ribbon at the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. In 1931 he introduced the 'Lang Plan', refusing to pay interest to British bondholders at the expense of Australian dole recipients; this led to his sacking in 1932. For many years after his dismissal, Lang continued to play a major part in Australian Labor politics.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of Elsie Martin 2000
© Adam P. Martin

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

Adam Martin

John Thomas "Jack" Lang (age 94 in 1970)

Subject professions

Government and leadership

Donated by

Elsie Martin (1 portrait)

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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 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.

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