This edition of the Art Bulletin of Victoria 30 encompasses essays discussing works from a variety of areas of the NGV’s collection:

Joost Van Auwera discusses Flemish painter Sebastiaen Vrancx’s Crossing of the Red Sea, the painting’s origins and how the Gallery’s acquisition of this exceptional work exemplifies the less commonly known aspects of Vrancx’s art; Gerald Bentley Jr comments on William Blake’s works in illuminated printing, in particular The First Book of Urizen and its unusually heavy embossing; Michael J. Tolley compares William à Beckett’s copy of Young’s Night Thoughts with its twenty-odd siblings, remarking on its unique and peculiar colour scheme; Caroline Clemente investigates the ‘artists in society’ in Melbourne from the 1850s–1880s and the associations that helped generate the watercolours and drawings of Georgiana McRae, Louisa Anne Meredith and Edward La Trobe Bateman; and Mary Alice Lee tracks the path of Jessie C. A. Traill as a student of Frank Brangwyn in the early 1900s.

We are also pleased to include Isobel Crombie’s fine examination of a photograph of Conrad Martens by Freeman Brothers Studio, 1856, and Judith Ryan’s detailed essay on the recently acquired Lajamanu panels, artworks set to challenge ‘our preconceptions about Aboriginal painting’.

We trust you will enjoy the articles and appreciate the breadth and depth of the contributors’ research and scholarship in this edition.