The NGV takes a look at Australia's colonial history and brings the Indigenous experience back to the fore in dual exhibitions
It's frequently said that Australians don't know or care much about their own history, and have little understanding of what occurred during colonisation. But the artists who were creating work on both sides of the black-white divide captured extraordinary landscapes, scenes of colonial developments and scenes of conflict that offer a colourful glimpse into our frequently dark past. These dual exhibitions show the collision of western and Indigenous art and trace how an Australian artistic expression came to be.
Colony: Australia 1770–1861 looks at the western art from the era, showing how the colonists viewed what was to them an unusual and new land. Colony: Frontier Wars looks at Indigenous art created in response to colonialism over the last two centuries. Both exhibitions are free and both are at the NGV's Federation Square gallery.