The 47th annual “Birds in Art” exhibition opens on Saturday, September 10, at the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, in Wausau, Wisconsin. The exhibit, one of the most prestigious exhibits of wildlife art in the world, features art created by 118 artists. It will be on view through November 27.
“Birds in Art” 2022 is replete with birds strutting, vocalizing, socializing, preening, and soaring. This year, 570 artists – a 12 percent increase over 2021 – submitted 946 artworks for consideration by the three-person jury.
Of the 118 selected artists, 95 were chosen by the jury in addition to 23 who were named Master Artists during previous “Birds in Art” exhibitions. Thirty-three are international, representing 15 different countries: Australia, Belgium, Canada, England, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.
Eleven are Wisconsin artists, three of whom also are among 18 first-time “Birds in Art” artists.
The exhibit include a painting by author and artist Kenn Kaufman, a Contributing Editor to BirdWatching. Kenn’s painting, titled “Emerald Amazon,” is a portrait of a female Amazon Kingfisher perched among the huge leaves of a cecropia tree.
First-year “Birds in Art” artist Alejandro Grajal said as the CEO of Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, he has traveled the world as an ornithologist and conservationist and remains “entranced by the wondrous beauty of birds.” The incongruity of a kingfisher intently looking for unsuspecting prey as it perched on a fish sculpture caught Grajal’s eye and inspired his painting.
In addition to paintings in watercolor, oil, and acrylic; sculptures in stone, wood, wire, aluminum, and bronze; and drawings in graphite, pastel, chalk, and charcoal, the exhibition includes various mediums – from cut paper and scratchboard to serigraphy, woodcut, linocut, and etching. Textile art is included from two first-time artists: Jim Hay, from Japan, who incorporated machine-sewn kimono into his whimsical work, and Canadian Sue Sherman, whose quilt depicts three Monk Parakeets.
Artworks by previously named Master Artists include Robert Bateman’s painting of a robin’s nest at his childhood home and Anne Senechal Faust’s timberdoodle serigraph.
“Birds in Art” 2022 opening-day festivities on Saturday morning, September 10, include a guest speaker’s presentation at 9:30 a.m.; Artists in Action demonstrations, 10:45 a.m. to noon; and morning opportunities to meet dozens of artists who flock to the museum from throughout the world for the opening of this internationally renowned exhibition. Visitors browse galleries to see fresh artistic takes on birds via original paintings, sculptures, and graphics created within the past three years. Since 1976, the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum has organized “Birds in Art” annually, seeking to present the best contemporary artistic interpretations of avian themes.
The opening-weekend hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, September 10, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, September 11. Hours vary on other days, and the museum is closed on Mondays and holidays, so check the website for details. Admission is always free.