Living Memory: National Photographic Portrait Prize at the National Portrait Gallery

Fri 12th November, 2021 – Sun 16th January, 2022
10:00am – 5:00pm
National Portrait Gallery
King Edward Terrace, Parkes ACT 2600
Price: $15
A bumper crop of artist submissions reflect a period of upheaval in Australia like no other in recent memory.

The annual National Photographic Portrait Prize (NPPP) exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery (NPG) in Canberra has been extended into 2022.

Selected from a national field of entries, this year’s exhibition – named Living Memory – aims to reflect the distinctive vision of Australia's aspiring and professional portrait photographers and their subjects through a period upheaval in Australia.

Named Living Memory to reflect the extraordinary events of late 2019-2020 which included widespread fires and a global pandemic, the 2021 prize was won by Sydney photographer Joel B. Pratley for his portrait Drought Story of farmer David Kalisch in the midst of an unexpected dust storm. The Highly Commended prize went to Julian Kingma for Tom at the drain, and Melbourne artist Kristina Kraskov’s photo of Michelle the ‘suburban fashionista’ was awarded the Art Handlers’ Award in early August.

Judges Nick Mitzevich (director, National Gallery of Australia), Karen Quinlan AM (director, National Portrait Gallery) and renowned Australian photographer Bill Henson selected 79 works for this year’s prize, more than double the usual amount, as a way of acknowledging the impact the pandemic has had on the creative community.

As a result, the exhibition will extend into January 2022 as a way to give people – and in some cases, the artists themselves – the opportunity to view the entries once lockdowns and travel restrictions are eased.

Central to the National Portrait Gallery’s program, the NPPP offers cash and equipment prizes for professional, amateur and aspiring photographers from all over Australia. For audiences, the exhibition offers an insight into the work of some of Australia’s best portrait photographers.

All works from Living Memory: National Photographic Portrait Prize 2021 can be viewed online. Audiences can also vote for the $5,000 People’s Choice Award, supported by the David Roche Foundation, and which closes Sunday 5 December. The winner will be announced mid-December.

Entries for the 2022 edition of the National Photography Portrait Prize are now open and will close in late January.

More details and book tickets. Book online for 10% off.

This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with the National Portrait Gallery