The most famous work by America's premier ornithological artist, The Birds of America presented 435 large, hand-colored engravings depicting more than 1,000 birds of 489 species. John James Audubon's historic volume, completed in 1838, was succeeded by the smaller lithographic illustrations of the much more affordable yet highly collectible octavo edition. This new collection contains 130 select plates from the octavo version, featuring splendid, scrupulously accurate portraits of the snowy egret, wild turkey, brown pelican, screech owl, and more. The birds are identified by both the common names used by Audubon and their modern equivalents. The culmination of the nature illustrator's career, these stunning works offer realistic portrayals of American birds in elegantly spare settings. An informative Introduction outlines the artist's life and his work and provides background on the creation of the octavo edition.
About the Author
America's greatest ornithological artist John James Audubon (1785-1851) came from his native Haiti to America in 1803. After an unsuccessful attempt at farming, Audubon turned his attention to collecting specimens of birds and portraying them in his inimitable paintings. After many years, he obtained financing in England for publication of the massive folio edition of The Birds of America, which established him as a major artist. Back in the United States, Audubon followed up the first edition of The Birds of America with his Ornithological Biography, a readable multi-volume companion to the massive plates, discussing the birds and his experiences studying them; the smaller, octavo edition of The Birds of America; and a similar publication on American animals, The Viviporous Quadrupeds of North America.