Three love stories we love

Three love stories we love

What’s not to love about a tale of the heart?


Love, in all its forms, takes centre stage at the National Portrait Gallery’s Love Stories exhibition, debuting on 20 March. The NPG’s curators Sandra Bruce and Joanna Gilmour provide a sneak peek at three love stories from this upcoming exhibition. 

  1. 1

    The Huxleys

    “It makes me smile to look at the Huxleys’ diptych, Smalltown Boy (Surfers Paradise) and Smalltown Boy (Perth). The work (comprised of two linked retro-postcard-style photographs) beautifully captures the artists’ relationship – one in which the love that they have for one another is inextricably linked through their creativity – and hints at the similarities in their backgrounds. Like all of the Huxleys’ art, it is a true collaboration full of joy, personal expression, and an infinite number of sequins.“ – Sandra Bruce, Director Collection & Exhibitions

    Retro postcard Man at Surfers Paradise
    Smalltown Boys (Surfers Paradise)

    Retro postcard man in Perth
    Smalltown Boy (Perth)

    Image credits: Smalltown Boy (Surfers Paradise), Smalltown Boy (Perth) from the ‘Postcards from the Edge’ series 2018. Will & Garrett Huxley. Courtesy of the artists

  2. 2

    Pat and Richard Larter

    “Around the time that Richard Larter’s exuberant portrait of his wife Pat was donated to the NPG, Richard wrote to our then senior curator saying how honoured he was that Pat would be represented in the Gallery’s collection. She was as much an artist as Richard was, although art history was slow in acknowledging it. I knew very little about the Larters when I started here in 2008, but the more I learn about their work – and about Pat’s work especially – the more inspired I become by the joyfully unabashed creativity they inspired in each other throughout their 40 years together.” –  Joanna Gilmour, Curator Collection & Research

    Painting of a woman
    Pat Larter - Pat Paining No 1

    Drawing of man with Gough Whitlam in background
    Richard Larter - Self portrait with pin up

    Image credits: Pat Painting No 1 1983, Richard Larter (1929–2014). National Portrait Gallery. Gift of Patrick Corrigan AM 2008; Self portrait with pin up 1965, Richard Larter (1929–2014), National Portrait Gallery. Purchased with funds from the Basil Bressler Bequest 2002.

  3. 3

    Frank and Margel Hinder

    “We are so fortunate to have these two thoughtful, intimate portraits in the Gallery’s collection.  Frank and Margel Hinder are another engrossing example of two artists who found a compatible partner in love and in creativity.  Over their many years together, Frank often used Margel as a subject, sketching her as she worked at her desk on her latest sculpture commission.  However, in this instance the ever-observant Frank has captured Margel at ease, enjoying a book, and with a little company at hand.” – Sandra Bruce, Director Collection & Exhibitions

    Woman sitting on a chair
    Margel and Tarquin, Canberra

    Sketch of a man
    Frank Hinder self portrait

    Image credits: Margel and Tarquin, Canberra c. 1945, Frank Hinder (1906–1992), National Portrait Gallery. Purchased with funds provided by the Ross family in memory of Noel and Enid Eliot 2014; Self portrait 1949, Frank Hinder (1906–1992), National Portrait Gallery. Gift of an anonymous donor 2007. 

    Book now

Love Stories runs at the National Portrait Gallery from 20 March through 1 August 2021. Bookings are essential. $15 / $12 concession / $10 Circle of Friends / Under 18s free.


Main image credit:  Rachel Ward and Brian Brown 2006 (printed 2020) by Peter Brew-Bevan. Purchased 2020 © Peter Brew-Bevan