Jeff travelled widely during his career as a photojournalist, documenting people and scenes – from the deeply rural to the white-bred suburban – in an attempt to illustrate Australian culture. His penchant for beach scenes reflects the surf culture that saturated coastlines during the 1960s and ‘70s.From the hardship of Tobacco Road to the frivolity of Bondi, it was Jeff’s ability to capture the essence of character through expression and physicality that earned his images their iconic status.
"Jeff was drawn to documenting and celebrating the lives of ‘ordinary’ people at work and play," says Sandra Byron, curator of the exhibition. "You can see in his images that he had a genuine admiration and respect for his subjects and the way they endured hardships, and he developed strong and lasting friendships with these people."
Jeff also wrote and illustrated 20 books, and produced Wild Country, a television series depicting Australia which received international recognition. He died in October 2010, leaving a legacy of images some 50,000 strong.