The first European explorers and colonists viewed Western Australia and its spectacular coast as an “unknown land”. Of course, it was no such thing – Aboriginal people had owned the land for thousands of years and were quickly in conflict with the imperialists. Whatever their motives – colonist, invader, explorer, settler, adventurer – the Europeans were awestruck by the land we now call Western Australia – and the opportunities it presented. This exhibition of the earliest watercolours, paintings and drawings of WA superbly captures images of iconic locations still familiar, but now mostly transformed. These artists were the first of many generations to be inspired by the landscape of WA. The visions are stunning. But the real story, as revealed in the exhibition -– which includes key Aboriginal works – was much more complex.