Dr Joseph Brown AO, OBE

Fu Hong

Dr Joseph Brown AO, OBE, 2007

Dr Joseph Brown, was an artist, art collector, adviser and extraordinary philanthropist.

He was also the subject of many portraits by Australian artists.

The collection of 150 artworks gifted by Dr Brown to the National Gallery of Victoria includes eight portraits, by artists including Arthur Boyd, John Brack and William Dobell. All show facets of Dr Brown’s life and work. Others have been gifted to various, mainly regional, galleries.

The first showing of the then BUS Collection comprising seventy-six works took place at Wollongong City Gallery from 16 March to 12 April, 1992.

Dr Brown wrote at the time: ‘There is a world of difference between purchasing works of art in the course of dealership, and buying on behalf of a project such as this. My own sensibility and taste could not be a crucial factor in determining the composition of the collection, because the overriding motive of BUS was to acquire a group of works with investment potential and within a limited space of time.

The forty-ninth portrait of Dr Joseph Brown AO OBE was appropriately the last acquisition to the Cbus Art Collection.