Exploring the history and legacy of Cook’s first voyage

Captain James Cook mapped the east coast of Australia aboard the Endeavour in 1770. 2020 marks 250 years since that historic voyage.

This exhibition on display in the Wharf 7 forecourt, examines Cook's voyage and its legacy, incorporating perspectives both of those aboard the Endeavour and the Indigenous inhabitants watching it from the shore.

It was a pivotal moment when two cultures - neither able to communicate or comprehend the other’s world, collided with near fatal consequences for the Indigenous custodians of the land, and their culture – a culture which we now know stretches back at least 60,000 years. 

The dual perspectives of this historic event have been missing from our national identity which we now have the opportunity to address.

James Cook, 1893, ANMM Collection 00000373Black Bastards Are Coming' by Gordon Syron, 2013

Images credits:

(Left) James Cook, 1893, ANMM Collection 00000373

(Right) This work re-imagines European contact from an Indigenous perspective. 'Black Bastards Are Coming' by Gordon Syron, 2013 © Gordon Syron. ANMM Collection 00054536, reproduced courtesy of Gordon Syron and licenced for use by the museum