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Australian painters gradually made the continent look less like Europe, but in Aboriginal work we can get behind European conventions of seeing altogether

By Sebastian Smee   September 2004

Landscape in the European tradition seems a tired old genre. One can easily feel, however mistakenly, that all the main moves have been played out, which may account for some recent attempts to revive the public’s interest in landscape with a few ill-judged doses of exoticism. The National Gallery sought to freshen things up over summer with an exhibition of little-known landscapes from Russia, while the National Maritime Museum has played the exotic card by showing the paintings of William Hodges. Hodges went to the south Pacific with Captain Cook in the 1770s, and his views of Tahiti make an…

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