Jugbirds for Alcheringa

Papua New Guinea carved and painted Hornbill.

Papua New Guinea carved and painted Hornbill.

Some weeks ago I received an email from Elaine Monds of Alcheringa Tribal Arts Gallery in Victoria. She was suggesting that if I were to make some jugbirds that resembled the crazy tropical birds of Papua New Guinea they’d look just fine alongside the carved and painted wooden birds made by the indigenous people there. She is having a Christmas show and wondered if I could get some to her by early November. Hah! Again, people seem to think I have lashings of finished work sitting on the shelves of my studio!

I agreed to try. I told Elaine that I’d start on some new work and see how many I could get finished in time. As I explained in my previous blog, it has been a quiet and sad time here but my family insisted that making new work was the best use of my time. I found that designing, throwing, assembling and painting these six jugbirds and several others has been such a comforting way to pass the days while I waited for the phone to ring.

Here I'm just finishing assembling the Hornbill.

Here I’m just finishing assembling the Hornbill.

 

 

My biggest jugbird is a Papuan Hornbill. I threw four sections and when they were somewhat stiffened I formed them into the feet, body and head and used the fourth cylinder to create the bill, casque and handle. I think that stage of fabricating is the most satisfying for me, as you can tell in this photo.

Freshly painted Hornbill drying

Freshly painted Hornbill drying

 

 

 

 

When he was safely and uniformly firmed up but still leather hard, not bone dry, I painted him with my coloured slips and a little orange underglaze. After the bisque firing he was finished with my clear glaze. To use this silly creature as a functional jug you fill it via the large spout/beak. In PNG he is also called a ‘Kokomo’.

 

 

Here he is, looking at you!

 

 

Papuan Hornbill or Kokomo

Papuan Hornbill or Kokomo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Papuan Hornbill

Papuan Hornbill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flame Bowerbird jug

Flame Bowerbird jug

 

 

The largest of the other jugbirds is painted to resemble a ‘Flame Bowerbird’. What wonderful colours these tropical birds are! I am including a Googled image for each new bird so that you can see what the real bird is like.

Flame Bowerbird

Flame Bowerbird

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black-Capped Lory

Black-Capped Lory Jugbird

Lory

Lory

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A really distinctively coloured bird is the ‘Black-Capped Lory’, similar to the Lorikeets we saw in Australia. I may like this little fellow best!

 

 

 

 

Yellow-Billed Kingfisher Jugbird

Yellow-Billed Kingfisher Jugbird

Yellow-Billed Kingfisher

Yellow-Billed Kingfisher

 

 

The Yellow-Billed Kingfisher gave me an excuse to use the cheerful orange again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red-Collared Honeyeater Jugbird

Red-Collared Honeyeater Jugbird

 

Red-Collared Honeyeater

Red-Collared Honeyeater

 

 

 

And the Red-Collared Honeyeater is boldly black with a contrasting red neck.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The sixth bird to join the little flock for this show is actually a resident of South America, the Scarlet Macaw. But Elaine said she’d like to show him too!

 

png birds

When I have an invitation for the show I’ll post it here, but basically it will be at Alcheringa Tribal Arts, on Fort Street in Victoria during December. Do let me know if you manage to see the show as I may not get over there. I’m very lucky that a friend travelling to Victoria on Saturday delivered the box of pots for me. Thank-you Iain!

 

 

 

3 Responses to “Jugbirds for Alcheringa”

  1. Lynda Jones

    Nov 17. 2015

    Fabulous, as usual Gillian. You really have a distinctive body of work. Sorry to hear about your brother. I lost my husband in April in an accident. I know how you feel the void.
    We are very fortunate that we have our creative outlet. I couldn’t do anything for awhile but am getting back into it now. Carry on!

  2. Linda Lebrun

    Nov 19. 2015

    You are amazing Gill, to design and make this many new birds in such a short time. Good use of that “in between” time.

  3. Deborrah Krutzmann

    Dec 22. 2015

    Gillian, Your latest work is so delightfully interesting. I enjoy your work very much and noticed that besides your Alcheringa exhibit, that you have some wonderful jugs at the lovely gallery on Oak Bay Avenue in Victoria, “Eclectic.”
    Your blog is great, and I get to see pictures of my brother Eric, which is always fun.
    I was saddened to hear of the recent passing of your brother Bill. It is terribly difficult to lose a sibling, as I’m sure Eric has shared our loss to you. Sending you thoughts and prayers as you soldier on.
    Kind regards,

    Deborrah

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