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The Bird in Art: from prehistory to the present day

Lecture on Monday 3rd June 2024 at 2:15PM

Lecturer: Frank Woodgate
Venue: Larruperz Centre

Most people love watching and listening to birds, from colourful jays to squawking parakeets, and this lecture enables us to look at them in all their glory.

From Aboriginal rock decorations, millennia ago, to the present day, birds appear in many different guises: as hunters and hunted, doves as symbols of peace or the holy spirit. Or we find them as attributes or the alter ego of gods: for example Juno’s peacocks, Jupiter’s eagle or Minerva’s wise owl.

This lecture not only celebrates the beauty of these wonderful wild creatures, but also shows the huge variety of ways in which artists have painted or sculpted them over the years. As Sir David Attenborough said: "Everyone likes birds. What wild creature is more accessible to our eyes and ears, as close to us and everyone in the world, as universal as a bird?".

Frank Woodgate is a lecturer at Tate Britain and Tate Modern, for the Art Fund, the National Trust, U3A and other organisations, including on Zoom. Formerly a Guide at both London Tates and lectured for Dulwich Picture Gallery, Pallant House Gallery, Chichester and on cruises on behalf of Tate. Previously script-writer for The Living Paintings Trust (art for the visually-impaired).

© The Arts Society Ross-on-Wye or the originator