I found this French book of the American bird artist Louis Agassiz Fuertes in a second-hand book stall at the summer Sunday street market in my hometown Porto Recanati. I was a teenager and at that time I had no idea about who this artist was, but I was into watercolours and birds and the book was a good bargain and I could read French. I was surprised to read that he was self-taught and also stricken to see the level of detail and yet expression and movement.
|Red-breasted Merganser ©Louis Agassiz Fuertes|
At 22, self-taught, Fuertes (1874-1927) was considered the most talented American bird artist of the time. An intimate knowledge of his subjects' lives and behaviours allowed him to truthfully represent birds expressions and attitudes combined with an exact ornithological rendering.
He took part as an artist and illustrator in ornithological expeditions and scientific explorations over USA, Greater Antilles, Mexico, Colombia, and Ethiopia. Definitely an inspiring life.
|Killdeer ©Louis Agassiz Fuertes|
He used to work from life, patiently and rigorously observing the living bird relying on his prodigious visual memory to flawlessly capture expressions and attitudes, he also worked from dead specimens to take life-size measurements and other details both drawn and written very thoroughly.
I found a beautiful website-archive with many of his paintings and sketches which is really worth a visit, click here, I hope you'll enjoy.
|Common Potoo ©Louis Agassiz Fuertes|
And this is also the last post for this year, with many more on the way about my latest endeavours, I would like to wish all the readers and followers, regardless of what religion you may follow, if any, a good time spent with loved ones, and best hopes for the new year to come.
Take care Matteo