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

Title

Albert Namatjira's father Jonathan Namatjira

1946
printed 1981

Artist

Axel Poignant

England, Australia, England

12 Dec 1906 - 05 Feb 1986

  • Details

    Other Titles
    Head of an old Aborigine (possibly a relative of Albert Namatjira)
    Portrait of an old Aborigine, Macdonnell Ranges, Northern Territory
    Dates
    1946
    printed 1981
    Media category
    Photograph
    Materials used
    gelatin silver photograph
    Dimensions
    45.4 x 34.7 cm image; 50.6 x 40.4 cm sheet
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Credit
    Purchased 1984
    Location
    Not on display
    Accession number
    44.1984
    Copyright
    © Courtesy Roslyn Poignant

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    Artist information
    Axel Poignant

    Works in the collection

    41

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  • About

    Though not born in Australia, Axel Poignant's work is largely about the 'Outback', its flora and fauna and the traditions of Australian and Indigenous identity. Poignant was born in Yorkshire in 1906 to a Swedish father and English mother, and arrived in Australia in 1926 seeking work and adventure. After tough early years of unemployment and homelessness, he eventually settled in Perth and found work as a portrait photographer, before taking to the road and the bush in search of new subjects. Poignant became fascinated with the photo-essay as a means of adding real humanity to the medium, and much of his work is in this form. The close relationships he developed with Aboriginal people on his travels are recorded in compassionate portraits of these people and their lives - the low angles and closely cropped frames appear more natural and relaxed than the stark compositions of earlier ethnographic photography.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

    • Four Photographers, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 02 Jun 1990–19 Aug 1990

Other works by Axel Poignant

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