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Original watercolour of 2 Spinetails, for Temminck's monumental ornithological work

PRÊTRE, Jean Gabriel.
[Synallaxe damier & Synallaxe à filets (= plate 311 from Temminck's Nouveau recueil de planches coloriées d'oiseaux ...)].
[France], 1824. Watercolour of 2 birds on unwatermarked wove paper (ca. 48 x 35 cm), both standing on a branch, the lowest branch signed: "JG Prêtre/ 1824". With the birds numbered in pencil and the plate number and bird names in pencil in the lower left corner.
€ 1,500
Original watercolour of a Chotoy Spinetail (Schoeniophylax phryganophilus) and an Araucaria Tit-Spinetail (Leptasthenura setaria) by the prolific zoological artist Jean Gabriel Prêtre, produced for Temminck's Nouveau recueil de planches coloriées d'oiseaux... (Paris, 1820-1839). Both species belong to the Ovenbirds family, a large family of small suboscine passerine birds, and are found throughout South America.
Temminck's lavishly illustrated Nouveau recueil de planches coloriées d'oiseaux... issued in 102 parts between 1820-1839, was published as a kind of continuation to Buffon's Histoire naturelle des oiseaux (1770-1786). In total it contains ca. 600 engraved plates with about 800 figures of birds by Nicolas Huet and Prêtre, and it's considered "the most monumental work of the post-Napoleonic period" (Balis).
Paper slightly browned. A beautiful watercolour of two Spinetails.
For the published work see: Anker 502; Balis, Van diverse pluimage 75; Nissen, IVB 932; Zimmer, pp. 626-628.
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Americas  >  South America
Art & architecture  >  Drawings, Prints & Watercolours
Natural history  >  Birds / Ornithology | Drawings, Prints & Watercolours