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9 December 2020

A Portrait of Australia will be on display at the National Museum of Australia

An exhibition of 56 iconic photographs and stories from the outback, bush and coast will open at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra today, as part of an unprecedented partnership between Australian Geographic and the Museum.

A Portrait of Australia: Stories through the lens of Australian Geographic features a stunning display of large-format photographic prints, and unites the expertise of Australian Geographic’s acclaimed photographers and the Museum’s interpretive storytelling experience.

The travelling exhibition opened in Toowoomba in August 2019 and will continue its successful tour across Australia during 2021, showing concurrently at multiple venues. The photographs have been drawn from the book A Portrait of Australia, which was produced to celebrate 30 years of Australian Geographic’s magazine.

National Museum Assistant Director, Public Engagement, Mark Goggin said, ‘This has been a marvellous opportunity to take Australian stories to venues around the country by combining the National Museum’s exhibition and curatorial expertise with Australian Geographic’s 30 years of unparalleled photographic coverage of Australia’s land, nature and people, and we are delighted to share it with our visitors for the first time.’

‘Visitors from Canberra and the region can experience different parts of the country which may not be accessible due to COVID-19 travel restrictions,’ Mr Goggin said.

Australian Geographic’s Editor-in-chief, Chrissie Goldrick, said, ‘We are thrilled to have partnered with the National Museum of Australia. Both organisations strive to tell authentic Australian stories using the very finest storytelling methods, whether it be words, images or objects. These beautifully presented exhibitions transform our words and pictures into a truly immersive experience.’

The exhibition celebrates the bush, the outback, the coast and the people who live and work there. Featuring photographs from the Australian Geographic archive, it will transport visitors to some of the most rugged and remote parts of the country where they can discover the remarkable stories of ordinary Australians. The exhibition will be on display at the National Museum until 8 March 2021.

Venues around the country can select from a collection of about 60 photographs to tell their own regional stories — and the stories of the nation. There has been strong interest from metropolitan and regional centres across Australia.

Upcoming venues include:

  • Pine Rivers Heritage Museum, Whiteside, Queensland, 16 October 2020 to 14 February 2021
  • SEEN@Swansea, Lake Macquarie, New South Wales, 5 June to 2 August 2021

Media contact: Diana Streak 02 6208 5091 | 0409 888 976 or

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