Earlier this year I was invited by Mobilia Gallery in Boston USA, to make a work for their exhibition 'The New Textiles', which will open in October. The gallery requested a bird and even though my Sanctuary Collection has come to it's natural conclusion here in Australia, this opportunity allowed me to make one more - pair of birds. I had always hoped to reinterpret an historical painting of an owl, either by Audubon or Lear, and now I have been given the opportunity. In the 1830's Edward Lear painted an exquisite pair of Snowy owls (Bubo scandiacus) for John Gould, which I embarked upon reinterpreting in reclaimed needlework, precariously pinned to tulle. As with many natural history paintings, I am drawn to the decorative way in which the artist arranged his birds and in this painting Lear nestles the female (or younger) owl closely behind the male, which creates a very intimate portrait. I am not trying to be exact in 'copying' Lear's birds but rather create a new work after Lear, which allows the unique materials of antique and vintage needlework a new life. I have given the owl facing the viewer a quizzical look, more reminiscent of Lear's poem, than his painting. I had the great privilege of delivering the work in person to the incredible team at Mobilia Gallery in Boston, just last week. The photos below show; Lear's original painting, my development of the work and the final work, photo by Gavin Hansford. The ad was designed by Emily Mele at Mobilia, for the current, Fall issue of Fiber Arts Now, USA.