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The Explorer Burke on a Camel

© Sidney Nolan Trust / Bridgeman Images. Photo credit: Leicester Museums and Galleries

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Nolan includes his characterisation of the explorer Robert O'Hara Burke, who with his partner William John Willis led the first expedition to cross Australia from South to North in 1860 using camels and horses, both perishing on the return leg. The figure of the loan explorer and his mount take on the dusty hue of their surroundings, acknowledging the harsh terrain and the task ahead with an expansive sweep of an arm.

Leicester Museum & Art Gallery





oil on board


H 122 x W 122 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

purchased from Marlborough Fine Art Ltd with the assistance of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, 1967

Work type


Leicester Museum & Art Gallery

53 New Walk, Leicester, Leicestershire LE1 7EA England

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