We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.


Sister Diddy

circa 1920


Grace Cossington Smith


1892 – 20 Dec 1984

Artist profile

  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Sydney New South Wales Australia
    circa 1920
    Media category
    Materials used
    pencil, crayon on buff wove paper
    34.0 x 26.7 cm sight/sheet; 52.2 x 42.0 cm frame
    Signature & date

    Signed and dated l.l., pencil 'G. Cossington Smith/ 1920?/ Sister Diddy'.

    Purchased with funds provided by Guy, Marian and Meredith Paynter 2018
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Estate of Grace Cossington Smith

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Grace Cossington Smith

    Artist profile

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Grace Cossington Smith loved to draw and continued the practice over her long career, including resolved works for exhibition, studies for paintings and drawings for personal use. Among her earliest drawings were images of everyday life at home in Sydney’s northern suburbs, with images of her home and its environs, and portraits of her family.

    Cossington Smith’s parents, siblings and later nieces and nephews were willing and available subjects for the artist; this drawing is of her younger sister Charlotte (“Diddy”, 1897-1962). Cossington Smith’s sketchbooks (now in the National Gallery of Australia) include several images of Diddy, characteristically pictured reading with her eyes downcast and feet propped up, images of domestic contentment and leisure. Diddy remained living at home in the Smith household with her sister Grace until the mid 1920s, when her career as a nurse progressed.

    Diddy is the subject of another Cossington Smith work in the Gallery collection, a painting titled ‘The reader’ c.1919.

  • Places

    Where the work was made


  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 4 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 2 publications

Other works by Grace Cossington Smith

See all 26 works