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New Hillary portrait marks Everest 50th

New Hillary portrait marks Everest 50th anniversary

A new portrait of Sir Edmund Hillary has been unveiled to mark the 50th anniversary of the Everest ascent.

This morning at a function in the Auckland Museum foyer Mayor John Banks officially unveiled the work, which was commissioned by the Auckland City Council as a commemorative gift.

Painted by award-winning Australian portrait artist, Lewis Miller, the work will be on loan to Auckland Museum as a partner to the much loved 1955 portrait of Sir Edmund by English artist, Edward J Halliday.

Mr Banks said: “Auckland City places putting success on a pedestal. We believed the best way for the City to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the assent of Mt Everest was to commission a contemporary portrait of our most distinguished citizen. It is a gift for the future.”

Director of Auckland Museum, Dr Rodney Wilson said: “It is wonderful to match the Halliday portrait, painted soon after Sir Edmund’s triumphant ascent of Everest, with another, some fifty years later. It is a striking portrait depicting a larger than life man, whose life has been, and continues to be, immense.”

Members of Sir Edmund’s family and representatives of the Himalayan Trust were present at the unveiling along with children from Starship Children’s Hospital, who recently completed an educational module on Sir Edmund’s life, and whose decorated flags with best wishes to Sir Edmund were also on display.

The work of Lewis Miller is held in both national and international collections. He is currently Australia’s official artist in Iraq, and has been a recipient of the prestigious Archibald Prize, Australia’s pre-eminent portraiture award.

The new portrait of Sir Edmund is on display at Auckland Museum from today.

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