Images of Nature

Rainbow lorikeets watercolour by Ferdinand Bauer

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See how artists and scientists view the natural world in 110 images from the Museum's collection in the Images of Nature gallery.

Spanning 350 years, historic prints, watercolours and paintings hang alongside modern images created by scientists, imaging specialists, photographers and micro-CT scanners.

The gallery includes a temporary exhibition of themed artworks.

The Bauer brothers

Our current exhibition is The Bauer Brothers: Masters of Scientific Illustration, on display until 26 February 2017.

We will showcase a new selection of exquisite botanical and zoological watercolours by Franz and Ferdinand Bauer every four months.

Enjoy a rare opportunity to see botanical and zoological artworks by two of the most accomplished natural history artists of all time.

'These Austria-born artists of the Romantic era portrayed nature with sensitivity and scientific rigour...their detailed images are marvels of discovery.' - The Guardian

Star specimens and exhibits

  • some of the first scientific images of Australian wildlife, observed by Ferdinand Bauer on the voyage of HMS Investigator (1801-1805)
  • Franz Bauer's intricate illustrations of orchids and other exotic plants introduced to the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
  • Roelandt Savery's famous dodo painting, with a more scientifically accurate interpretation of the extinct bird by Julian Pender Hume
  • interactive screens, where you can explore a variety of artworks
  • a drawing wall, where you can contribute your own picture

Galleries and Museum map

Discover what you can see and do in our other galleries, and find out how to get around with our Museum map.


Scientific discovery through images

Tour highlights from the Museum's art collection and Imaging and Analysis Centre, in a collaboration with Google Arts & Culture.


Help conserve the natural history art collection in our care