John Gould (1804-1881)
A selection from: The Birds of Europe
Original hand-colored lithograph
Sheet Dimension: 21 x 14.5 in.
Frame Dimension: 32.5 x 26 in.
John Gould (1804-1881) was an English ornithologist, self-taught artist and naturalist. His interest in birds was continually developing and in 1830 he published his first volume on birds, A Century of Birds From the Himalaya Mountains. For the next fifty years, Gould and his wife Elizabeth and artist working with them traveled around Asia, the East Indies and Australia.
The Birds of Europe includes amazingly distinctive, and highly realistic images. Gould undertook this work partly in effort to redress the imbalance between the study of local and foreign ornithology. Gould portrayed birds native to Europe in a manner that had only been thought appropriate for the colorful species of distant places. In this way he managed to draw much popular interest back to native European birds, which were suddenly considered equally beautiful to exotic species.