Within a museum; within a gallery

A company of parrots in the gallery

Gracia Haby & Louise Jennison
Prattle, scoop, trembling: a flutter of Australian birds
Artists' book, unique state, featuring 15 individual collages on cabinet card with pencil additions, 15 pencil drawings on Fabriano Artistico 640gsm traditional white hot-press paper with metallic paint trim; housed in a Solander box with inlaid collage

exhibited alongside
An index box of Australian birds still fluttering
Collage housed in a cloth Solander box, with inlaid drawing

Underneath Soane's 'star-fish' ceiling, the library at No. 12 proved anything but quiet
Giclee print on Ilford 310gsm paper

Installing our artists’ book, Prattle, scoop, trembling: a flutter of Australian birds, in the gallery chimes, as we suspected it would, to the tone of happiness. Seeing it all come together, and in a new environment — ring the bells, one, two, three — this fleeting, nervous, giddy state is exhilarating.

Grab your triangles, your cymbals too, and join us in the gallery-cum-museum. Before the lights lower their gaze, and the space is not yours, but one to share, come and preen the feathers of the Pied oystercatcher (Haematopus longirostris) on the rim of the blue, blue world.

Come, see our birds from a book, unbound.


Naturalist John Lewin (1770–1819), said (historian) Bernard Smith, “grasped the nature of the eucalyptus, its light translucent foliage through which the horizon may be seen, and the nature of the slender and feathery grasses of the interior. He succeeded, too, in portraying an authentic bush atmosphere.” And it is especially thrilling for our cockatoos and magpies to be in such company in the gallery. To my left shoulder, his Red-winged parrot (1819), and to my right, a pair of Squatter pigeons (Phaps chalcoptera) (1819).

Yes, this branch shelf is just right. Roost awhile.

And be sure to pick up a copy of The Warbler as you leave.


Prattle, scoop, trembling: a flutter of Australian birds was created especially for the exhibition

Birds: Flight paths in Australian Art
2nd December, 2016 – 12th February, 2017
Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery
Civic Reserve, 350 Dunns Road (corner of Mornington-Tyabb Road and Dunns Road), Mornington, Victoria

Brook Andrew; Arthur Boyd; Richard Browne; Penny Byrne; Kate Daw & Stewart Russell; Adrienne Doig; Marian Drew; Juan Ford; Gracia Haby & Louise Jennison; Fiona Hall; Treahna Hamm; Hans Heysen; Patrina Hicks; Judy Holding; Clara Ngala Inkamala; Judith Pungarta Inkamala; James Stu; Leila Jeffreys; Martin King; John William Lewin; Sydney Long; Joseph McGlennon; James Morrison; Munduwalawala; David Noonan; Jill Orr; Trent Parke; Kenny Pittock; Ben Quilty; Kate Rohde; Heather Shimmen; James Smeaton; Valerie Sparks; Henry Steiner; Tjunkaya Tapaya; Claudia Terstappen; Rover Thomas; Christian Thompson; Albert Tucker; Louise Weaver; Guan Wei; Fred Williams; John Wolesley; Salvatore Zofrea


Image credit: Gracia Haby and Louise Jennison, Prattle, scoop, trembling: a flutter of Australian birds, 2016, artists’ book (featuring an Australian king-parrot (Alisterus scapularis) and a Rainbow lorikeet (Trichoglossus moluccanus))