‘Bird is the Word’ 2015 Mata Art Gallery

Co-Habitation: A series of paintings by Heather Cline exploring Robins and shared domestic space.

During the spring of 2010 a Robin pair nested in a tree outside our front window. We set up a Robin Cam to capture images and share them with our family and friends. This resulted in a body of work entitled ‘Robincam’, 50 paintings depicting the Robins over a 6 week period, from egg to flight. One of the interesting aspects of creating this initial body of work was how invested I became in the daily lives of the birds. I started to research the species and also gained a heightened awareness of the other birds that shared our outdoor living space. With this knowledge came a deeper understanding of the fragile nature of the Songbirds existence. The series Co-Habitation was painted based on a risky nest that returning Robins built on the exterior light fixture of our garage. The complex natural structure of twigs, leaves and found objects is a stark contrast to the white stucco exterior of the aging urban garage. It is a poignant reminder of how little thought we put into how our shared urban space impacts local wildlife.