- 24 December, 1873
- Artist and Women's rights activist
Artist and feminist, Portia Geach was born on 24 December 1873 in Melbourne, Victoria. She studied design in 1890-92 and painting from 1893 to 1896 at the Melbourne National Gallery schools. Late in 1896 she won a scholarship to the schools of the Royal Academy of Arts in London, where she studied for four years. She also worked in Paris and exhibited in England, Paris and New York. On her return to Australia she held numerous exhibitions first in Melbourne and then in Sydney when she moved there with her family in 1904.
On her return to Sydney from a visit to the United States of America in 1917 Portia, influenced by a meeting of a housewives' association she had attended in New York, founded and was president of the New South Wales Housewives' Association. It aimed to educate women in the principles of proper nutrition and to aid them in their struggles against profiteering and rising food prices. In 1928 she reorganised the association as the Housewives' Progressive Association. For many years she was also president of the Federated Association of Australian Housewives.