Following on from an artist residency at Ricklundgården in Northern Sweden to capture the sounds of migrating birds and to draw their song, I have created two monoprints at the Leicester Print Workshop, to be exhibited as part of Since 1843: In the Making at the Bonington Gallery at Nottingham Trent University. The exhibition continues until 7 February 2014.
Olga Karlíková’s series ‘Audible landscapes’, inspired the idea of drawing birdsong, where she would sit from dawn to dusk in her garden listening and drawing.
The monoprints show the sound of the songs and calls from the Brambling and Redshank and the Curlew, which were recorded in Sweden. The Brambling’s song has been turned into a symbol which represents it’s low pitch, buzzy and repetitive notes. The Redshank call on this print (along with the brambling song) features in a red/orange background, like a distant alarm; a call used in flight when the bird has been startled or panicked by its prey. The Curlew song has an evocative call and is represented using white spirit on oil based ink.
Both monoprints have been structured using the sound recordings (taken in Sweden) and colour palettes taken from the colour of the bird (for example the Redshank’s bright red/orange legs) and its environment to create a fluid and expressive representation of bird vocalisation, including its tone, pitch, speed and pattern.