Natural history

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"American Avoset"

Artist: Port Jackson Painter
Created: [between 1788 and 1797]
Dimensions: 47 x 26.5 cm
Reference: Watling Drawing - no. 336


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Bird shown in almost frontal view, its body turned slightly to the left, and its head in profile to the right. It is depicted standing on brown and pink up-tilted outcrop overlaid with grey serpentine lines, in front of a stretch of water represented by a gradated wash of blue through white, pale yellow and pink to blue, overlaid with short horizontal dark-grey lines in the foreground. There is a green headland on the horizon but an otherwise plain background. The bird's head and neck are red-brown overlaid with darker hatched lines, with a white ring around the eye. The back and underparts are white, with feathers under the tail outlined in grey, and the wing is black with a white stripe. The legs are pale blue-green with darker grey detail. The drawing is framed by a pencil border at the top and sides, with a black ink and wash base-line, and annotated in ink and pencil.


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