Australia 1911 – 2003

The sleeper 1939 Materials & Technique: photographs, gelatin silver photograph
Primary Insc: Signed l.r. print border, pencil, "Olive Cotton". Dated l.l. print border, pencil, "...'39". Titled l.l. print border, pencil, "The sleeper".

Dimensions: printed image 29.2 h x 25.0 w cm sheet 38.0 h x 32.4 w cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 1987
Accession No: NGA 87.1766


  • The sleeper 1939, Olive Cotton's graceful study of her friend Olga Sharp resting while on a bush picnic, made around the same time as Max Dupain's Sunbaker, presents a different take upon the enjoyment of life in Australia. The woman is relaxed, nestled within the environment. The mood is one of secluded reverie.

    Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra