Two of Australia’s leading cultural institutions are currently mounting exhibitions to celebrate the centenary of Patrick White's birth.
At the National Library of Australia, The Life of Patrick White looks at White’s life ‘through the places he lived’. With content drawn largely from the library’s own collection of White papers, the exhibition ‘not only tells the story of White in all his guises, it also provides great insight into the post-war Australian arts scene’.
The National Portrait Gallery is hosting The White Whiteley Exhibition centring on Brett Whiteley's Patrick White at Centennial Park, 1979-1980. Whiteley painted the work while White was writing the autobiographical Flaws in the Glass: A Self-Portrait. The two portraits — ‘painted and written' — 'developed together’. The Portrait Gallery describes the Whiteley painting as ‘one of Australia’s great portraits’, but notes that ‘White felt betrayed by elements of the work’.
Both exhibitions are free and are open daily. The National Library exhibition runs until 8 July, after which it will re-locate to the State Library of New South Wales (13 August to 28 October). The exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery will be on display until 22 July. Further information is available at these websites: National Library of Australia and National Portrait Gallery.
(Image credits for the portrait of Patrick White, above: A. T. Bolton, Patrick White, Centennial Park, 1984, gelatin silver. Courtesy of Digital Collections, National Library of Australia.)