See the world through the eyes of natural history artists and explorers, who recorded nature both from the British Isles and from all over the world, as Western explorers first saw it.
The images shown here are selected from the Museum’s important collections of natural history art from the 18th and 19th centuries.
Explore artwork depicting the wonderful diversity of India’s plants and animals from the mid-1700s onwards. Such painstaking observation of the natural world played an important part in the success of one of the world’s first corporations - the British East India Company.
View fascinating drawings of Australia’s people, wildlife and landscape as seen by artists of the First Fleet that arrived in 1788 to establish the first British colony. Look beyond the images at the untold story of the Aboriginal people who already lived there.
Discover the exquisitely beautiful and scientifically important botanical and zoological paintings commissioned by Reeves while in China (1812-1831).
Marvel at William MacGillivray's gallery of over 200 watercolour paintings depicting British birds, fish and mammals (1796-1851).
Botanical drawings from Captain Cook’s HMS Endeavour (1768-1771), the first voyage devoted to scientific discovery.
Explore the many themes, including Natural Wonders and Caught in Oils, that represent the different aspects of the art collections.