Elaine Haxton AM (1909–1999), painter, graphic artist and theatre designer, grew up in Sydney. Leaving school at fourteen, she studied at the East Sydney Technical School before travelling to London to work with an advertising agency and further her studies at the Grosvenor School of Art. On the outbreak of war, she returned to Australia via New York and Mexico, where she became interested in murals. A key member of a group of artists which included Russell Drysdale and William Dobell, in 1942 she was commissioned to paint scenes from the Ballet Russes production Le Coq D'Or on the walls of the restaurant of that name in Ash Street, Sydney. The following year she won the Sulman Prize for these restaurant murals, which had been painted over by the early 1950s. After a period producing ballet costumes and sets in Dutch New Guinea, she returned to New York to study theatre design. In the 1950s, she studied printmaking techniques in Paris and Japan. A six-time Sulman finalist in the 1940s and 1950s, Haxton exhibited extensively, and retrospectives of her prints and drawings were held in 1983 and 1990. Her work was included in Creating a Scene at the Victorian Arts Centre in 2004 and Stage Fright: The art of theatre at the National Gallery of Australia in 2005.


  • Title: Elaine Haxton
  • Creator: Max Dupain
  • Date Created: c. 1940s
  • Physical Dimensions: sheet: 26.0 x 30.5 cm, image: 24.5 x 29.1 cm
  • Provenance: Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra Gift of Richard King 2008 Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program
  • Rights: https://www.portrait.gov.au/form-image-request.php
  • External Link: https://www.portrait.gov.au/portraits/2008.26
  • Medium: Gelatin silver photograph

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