Fred Cress was born in India, studied in Birmingham and arrived in Australia in 1962. He began as a figurative artist then switched to abstract work in the late 1960s, only returning to figurative work in 1988 when he won the Archibald Prize with a portrait of the artist John Beard. Cress also won the People’s Choice award that year, being the only artist to do so until 2003. In 2003, Cress was awarded an AM for services to Visual Arts in Australia. Cress is represented in the Australia National Gallery, Canberra and all Australian State and Regional Galleries, Corporate and private collections in Australia, England, France, Holland, USA, Switzerland, Italy and New Zealand.