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On View: Audubon’s Famous Watercolors Take Flight at the New-York Historical Society

Along with the Hudson River School landscapes, John James Audubon’s iconic watercolors for The Birds of America (1827-38) are part of New York’s trove of cherished art.

‘Great Blue Heron’ by John James Audubon, 1821, 1834 (Photo: © The New-York Historical Society)

‘Great Blue Heron’ by John James Audubon, 1821, 1834 (Photo: © The New-York Historical Society)

Both can be enjoyed at the New-York Historical Society. Audubon’s Aviary: Parts Unknown (Part II of The Complete Flock) is the second of three exhibitions showcasing the 435 beloved watercolors in the order in which they were engraved.

John James Audubon was a 19th century naturalist, explorer, artist and namesake of the National Audubon Society. He is often referred to as America’s first great watercolorist and he considered these particular watercolors his “great work.” He also expertly melded science and art and was an early advocate for wilderness conservation.

Parts Unknown features the evolution of Audubon as a “world-citizen” and follows his explorations of new territories and the detailed chronicling of their avian denizens. Exhibition highlights include the Great Blue Heron, Whooping Crane, Atlantic Puffins, Snowy Egrets and the Golden Eagle.

Audubon’s Aviary: Parts Unknown (Part II of The Complete Flock) is on view at the New-York Historical Society through May 26, 2014.

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