By: E Small, PM Catling, J Cayouette and B Brookes
266 pages, colour illustrations
John James Audubon was one of the world's greatest painters of wildlife. He is best known for The Birds of America, a gigantic 4-volume set of 435 paintings that to this day remains one of the largest books ever produced, the most expensive book ever sold at auction and an artistic achievement almost without parallel.
In the last 2 centuries, dozens of books have been produced, either stressing Audubon's work as pure art or documenting the animals that were painted. The present volume is unique in emphasizing the plants that Audubon frequently illustrated along with his animals.
Full colour reproductions are shown of more than 100 of Audubon's best paintings, chosen for their excellent portrayal of plants. Each magnificent full page plate is accompanied by information on the animals (mostly birds), the painting and (most particularly) the plants. An introductory, extensively illustrated chapter details Audubon's life and career – a fascinating story of heroic achievements in the face of great obstacles. A second chapter deals with Audubon's conservation legacy, a topic of considerable importance to the world's ongoing crises related to loss of biodiversity, degradation of the environment and global warming.
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