The Art & Science of Exploration, 1768-80
Art and Science
An exhibition of exceptional paintings, prints and drawings by specially commissioned artists on Captain Cook’s 18th-century voyages of discovery. These works influenced forever how the European public saw the Pacific.
George Stubbs paintings
Imagine trying to paint an animal that you’ve never seen. The exhibition was inspired by our two newly-acquired paintings by George Stubbs – the first depictions of a kangaroo and a dingo in Western art. The kangaroo is now on tour as part of our Travellers’ Tails programme.
Captain Cook's voyages of exploration
Cook brought back accounts and images of extraordinary lands, peoples, flora and fauna. Artists played a crucial role on his three voyages of discovery, producing both scientific records and imaginative responses to the unfamiliar lands that he encountered.
On display in The Art & Science of Exploration, 1768-80 are portraits, landscapes and scenes of encounters with Pacific islanders painted by William Hodges and John Webber, as well as botanical prints based on drawings by Sydney Parkinson.
Explore objects from Cook's voyages of exploration in our collections
With funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Eyal Ofer Family Foundation, the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the Art Fund.
* Acquired with the assistance of Heritage Lottery Fund; Eyal Ofer Family Foundation; The Monument Trust; The Art Fund (with a contribution from the Wolfson Foundation); The Crosthwaite Bequest; The Sackler Trust; Sir Harry Djanogly CBE; The Hartnett Conservation Trust; Sheila Richardson and Anthony Nixon; The Leathersellers' Company; Gapper Charitable Trust; Genevieve Muinzer and others.