Catherine Helen Spence was a social and political reformer. From 1893, Spence campaigned for the introduction of proportional representation. As part of her campaign, she ran for the Federal Convention in 1897, becoming the first woman candidate for office in Australia.
This portrait was painted by local Adelaide artist Maude Gordon, probably from a photograph.
Maude Gordon, watercolour, c1900, Adelaide. State Library of South Australia, B 11192