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Last Updated: Friday, 16 February 2007, 12:01 GMT
Gallery replaces Greer with Irwin
Steve Irwin
Steve Irwin was a hero to many in Australia and around the world
Steve Irwin has replaced Germaine Greer - who caused controversy by criticising the TV presenter after his death - in Australia's National Portrait Gallery.

After Irwin was killed by a stingray last year, Greer wrote that the animal world had "taken its revenge", saying he manhandled and distressed them.

A spokesman for the Canberra gallery said the removal of the Greer portrait was not linked to her comments.

He said they often rotated pictures - but the "irony was not lost on us".

The gallery, based in Canberra's Old Parliament House, only has space for 100 portraits to be displayed at any one time.

Spokesman David Edghill said the decision to swap the photographs was "not politically motivated".

Germaine Greer
Germaine Greer said there was no animal Irwin "would not manhandle"
"We have to rotate them regularly - the Greer portrait by Jacqueline Mitelman had been up for six months," he said.

The gallery is due to move to a new building with room for 500 portraits next year.

Mr Edghill said the public had been very keen to see the Irwin portrait by Australian photographer Robin Sellick, which was acquired by the gallery in January and went on display on 9 February.

The photograph, taken in September 2005, shows Irwin posing with an elephant at the Australian Zoo.

The gallery also owns another portrait of Greer by photographer Polly Borland - but this is not on display at the moment either.

Irwin was known around the world as "the crocodile hunter" and was famed for his enthusiasm and daredevil interaction with animals on his television programmes.

He was killed during a diving expedition off the Australian coast last September.

Greer, who has carved out a career in the media, is one of the best known feminists of the 20th Century, largely thanks to her seminal 1970 text The Female Eunuch.


SEE ALSO
Australia shows Irwin's last film
29 Jan 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Irwin's daughter in US TV debut
12 Jan 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Irwin death video given to wife
04 Jan 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Moving farewell to 'wildlife warrior'
20 Sep 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Greer suggests reality TV lessons
28 Aug 05 |  Entertainment
Greer attacks 'bully' Big Brother
12 Jan 05 |  Entertainment

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