Portrait of Margaret Olley in her Paddington studio, 2011 by John McRae

image of Portrait of Margaret Olley in her Paddington studio 2011 by John McRae

Artist's statement

I had the great pleasure of photographing Margaret in her Paddington studio, a place well known for its colourful clutter and referred to by some friends as 'The Dolls House'. In my portrait, Margaret is seated in her painting chair, confronting the lens with her particular sense of candour and an uncommon frailty. As far as I know, this may well be the last photo taken of her before her death the following month. Christine France – art critic, author of Margaret Olley (1990), commented, "It is a wonderful photo in that it captures both the vulnerability and sense of enquiry which entered her face in the last months of her life".