Thursday 27 July 2023

Pictures at an Exhibition.

Yesterday I went to see the Pierre Bonnard Exhibition at the NGV in Melbourne.

I wanted to see "White Cat' - which is famous, but there were other reasons too.

Well, here it is.  

I like the following two art works much more.

But most of all I liked the second half of the exhibition, where the 'walls' of the gallery had been decorated by India Mahdavi, who is a "Paris based designer".   

The colours in this section were drawn from the art works on the walls, but best of all there were windows in the walls that showed different parts of the exhibition - I really loved these, and I think I enjoyed the installation more than the 'art'!  These are some pictures I took.

If you get a chance, I think you should go see this exhibition.  SM

Wednesday 26 July 2023

Wild Bird Wednesday 574 - Black-fronted Dotterel

At the same small pond as last week, but this time the Dotterel is the Black-fronted Dotterel (Elseyornis melanops).

This is a smaller bird than the Red-kneed Dotterel, and this time the common name is more accurate as it does have a black front - and the RKD does not have red knees!

Anyway, this species also seemed rather more timid that its pond-mate and stayed further away.

As you can see the mud around the edge of the pond was very fluid, but must have been filled with goodies.

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Wednesday 19 July 2023

Wild Bird Wednesday 573 - Red-kneed Dotterel

The Red-kneed Dotterel (Erythrogonys cinctus) is the only species in its genus.  It is a lover of damp and floods places.  Last week I sat myself down next to a muddy pool to see what was about.  If the truth be told I had visited the pool a couple of days before and had returned with better camera gear and the hope that these birds would still be there.  (It's one of the advantages of retirement that I can now do, rather than just think about such expeditions!)

There were at least 5 of the birds on the pool, three adults and two younger birds.  As you can see from the pictures the birds were feeding in liquid mud - and no matter how hard I tried I could not see what they were feeding on.

The Red-kneed Dotterel is a small, plump wader with relatively long legs. Young birds are similar to adults but the hood and breast band are brown. 

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Wednesday 12 July 2023

Wild Bird Wednesday 572 - Little Raven

The Little Raven (Corvus mellori) is the default raven in the areas around Melbourne - commonly called a 'crow' but the general public, but taxonomists would disagree.  Ravens are gernerally larger, and have different shaped wings and tails to crows.  There is also some differences in the colour of the soft feathers near the skin.  But what ever the differences - and they are not large enough for crows and ravens to be placed in separate genera - they are smart birds to look at, and smart in the intelligence stakes as well.

These birds were loafing around on a fence at the Point Cook Wetlands this weekend.  You can see a couple of interesting things in these pictures.  Firstly you can see the extra eyelid, called the nictitating membrane, on one of the birds.  And secondly, I suspect that the preening being done by one bird to another is allopreening, which may mean spring is in the air!

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Wednesday 5 July 2023

Wild Bird Wednesday 571 - Pacific Gull

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that Pacific Gulls (Larus pacificus) had very large beaks — last week I got the chance to photograph this species rather closer the normal and I took the opportunity to do some beak shots!

This bird is at Wilsons Promontory National Park, and given the way it walked up to my car I suggest that it is used to getting food from visitors!  

Gulls of the World (Olsen) describes the beak as being 'almost grotesquely large' which seems a bit harsh to me. 'Impressively large' would seem more appropriate!

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