Two years in the making, ‘Birds: Flight Paths in Australian Art’ explores the science, symbolism, beauty and curiosity of birds. Birds are explored as objects of desire, in relation to fashion, history, identity, the environment and as emblems of empire and nationhood. In a country proud of its unique birds – our kookaburras, emus, galahs and cockatoos – contemporary artists also consider the threats to our fragile ecology.
The exhibition spans time periods and mediums – iconic works by colonial artists John Lewin and Richard Browne and early 20th century artists Sydney Long and Hans Heysen are juxtaposed alongside these contemporary works including Brook Andrew, Fiona Hall, Ben Quilty and the gallery’s Petrina Hicks and Valerie Sparks.
The exhibition includes a specially commissioned interactive work by Juan Ford where visitors are invited to create a bird filled landscape using thousands of bird stickers provided by Ford.