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AGWA Curator Melissa Harpley

  "unknown land" Mapping and imagining Western Australia

   LAST DAYS

   SPECIAL two for one offer

  17 September 2016 – 30 January 2017

  Adult $12 | Concession/Student $8 | Children 5-17 $5 | Under 5 free

  WESTERN AUSTRALIAN

  CURATED BY MELISSA HARPLEY,

  HISTORICAL + MODERN ART

 

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“Everyone should see it”
“Unknown Land” visitor


“Amazing pictorial insight into West. Aust. History”
“Unknown Land” visitor


“…an important exhibition that all Western Australians should view…”

Ted Snell, The Conversation


Read more about the exhibition in this PerthNow article here

Additional Media

The West Australian

The Australian

The Conversation

ABC

WAToday

Artist's Chronicle

Weekend Australian Review

Experience WA through the eyes of the first European explorers and colonists

The first European explorers and colonists viewed Western Australia and its spectacular coast as an “unknown land”.

Of course, it was no such thing – Aboriginal people had owned the land for thousands of years and were quickly in conflict with the imperialists.

Whatever their motives – colonist, invader, explorer, settler, adventurer – the Europeans were awestruck by the land we now call Western Australia – and the opportunities it presented. This exhibition of the earliest watercolours, paintings and drawings of WA superbly captures images of iconic locations still familiar, but now mostly transformed. These European artists were the first of many generations to be inspired by the landscape of WA.

The visions are stunning. But the real story, as revealed in the exhibition was much more complex.

To broaden views of these topical issues, AGWA also presents two fascinating exhibitions to counterpoint and complement “Unknown Land”.

Dissenting Voices is a strongly political show which demonstrates how artists, including significant Indigenous practitioners, use the visual as means of protest, debate and robust dissent. It includes works by prominent Australian practitioners such as Tom Nicholson, Marco Fusinato, Raquel Ormella and Mike Parr; Indigenous artists Gordon Bennett, Julie Dowling, Gordon Hookey, Tracey Moffatt and Lin Onus; and international stars from all periods from Francisco Goya to Leon Golub.

By contrast, the Gifts to the Fallen exhibition is a reflective and emotionally charged expression of the Aboriginal voice. This exhibition of Aboriginal work focussing on responses to death, and the ceremonies around it is breathtaking. It presents a combination of traditional and contemporary objects that reference Aboriginal mortuary beliefs and practices. It’s a poignant, beautiful and resonant rejoinder, perhaps, to those who thought they were walking an “unknown land”.

 

AGWA TV

'See WA before it was WA’ is the strap line for the exhibition. The AGWA drone flew over Mount Eliza, Fraser Point and upstream Swan River to see how the setting of three historic artworks has changed. VIEW IT HERE.

W Benson Out near Balingup 1864

Unknown Portrait of Spicer Cookworthy 1850s   A View of Koombana Bay, or Port Leschenault, Australind, Western Australia 1840s


Exhibition Partner

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Media Partners

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Frederick Garling

View of Swan River, taken at the commencement of fresh waters 1827 (detail)
Watercolour, ink and pencil
22.5 x 32.8 cm (sheet)
State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia
Purchased 1957


W Benson

Out near Balingup 1864

oil on board

47.5 x 69.0 cm (framed) 33.5 x 55.0 (image)

MK. State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia

Purchased 1991


Unknown

Portrait of Spicer Cookworthy 1850s

oil on canvas

36.8 x 31.2cm

State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia

Gift of Mrs I L Lindberg and her two sons Douglas and Henry, 1977

Louisa Clifton S P Newcombe, Thomas C Dibdin, Smith Elder and Co, London

A View of Koombana Bay, or Port Leschenault, Australind, Western Australia 1840s

coloured lithograph

35.7 x 52 cm (image) 52.1 x 69 cm (sheet)

State Art Collection, Art Gallery of Western Australia

Transfered from the Public Library, 1956

 

 


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