The Artist Explorers (Hardback)
Painting The New World
It was in large part the lure of riches, such as spices and gold, and the promise of fertile land which tempted the British and other Europeans to venture out to unknown lands.
These intrepid explorers, who devoted and often lost their lives on journeys of discovery, were frequently accompanied by artists. At the time there was no other way of pictorially recording their exploits and experiences.
James Cook and his botanist Joseph Banks had artists Alexander Buchan and Sydney Parkinson on board for their initial voyage to the South Seas. Buchan’s first pictures were of the natives of Tierra del Fuego as the Endeavour rounded Cape Horn but tragically within a month he died, apparently of epilepsy. Thomas Baines travelled with Livingstone while Charles Heaphy in New Zealand and the Governor's wife in India were amongst many others who produced drawings and paintings.
The many fine works in this book fashioned the British public's image of their countrymen’s discoveries and, later, of the lives of those who remained in these faraway places. Right up to the start of the 20th century their publication in the illustrated papers of the day became the core of popular appreciation.
Rating: 5 out of 5 starsNetGalley, Andrea Romance
This volume features some of the beautiful and illuminating artworks created by the artists who traveled with European explorers. It also includes excerpts of the writings of the explorers. These histories are fascinating but often horrifyingly colonialist. It's a startling look into the minds of the Europeans of this era.