Aboriginal art will be included in a particular way, with essentialized assumptions about its difference from European art – such as that ‘Aboriginal artists are members of groups, the rights in Aboriginal paintings are corporately held, and the designs have been handed on unchanged from the Dreamtime’. The ways in which Aboriginal people conceptualize art objects, the ways in which they talk about them and the kind of knowledge that they bring to bear on them has to be the basis of art history’s writing about Aboriginal art. Most academic disciplines are grounded in the common-sense knowledge and experience of members of the societies in which they develop. Art history is no exception and has evolved as part of Western systems of knowledge with an inevitable bias toward the common-sense understanding of the societies concerned.