2 watercolour of 3 BIRDS 106


Description: PRÊTRE, Jean Gabriel.
[Traquet oreillard, Traquet à queue noire & Traquet leucomèle (= plate 257 from Temminck's Nouveau recueil de planches coloriées d'oiseaux ...)].
[France], 1823. Watercolour of 3 birds on unwatermarked wove paper (ca. 48 x 35 cm), all standing on a branch, the lowest branch signed: "JG Prêtre/ 1823". With plate number in pencil in the lower left corner.
€ 1,650
Original watercolour of a Black-eared Wheatear (Oenanthe hispanica), a Blackstart (Oenanthe melanura) and Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe pleschanka) by the prolific zoological artist Jean Gabriel Prêtre, produced for Temminck's Nouveau recueil de planches coloriées d'oiseaux... (Paris, 1820-1839).
The Black-eared Wheatear and the Pied Wheatear are both small migratory passerine birds. The Black-eared Wheatear is found in northern Africa, southern Europe, and from the Middle East to China, and the Pied Wheatear in eastern Europe and Asia. The Blackstart, also described as belonging to the genus Cercomela instead of the genus Oenanthe, is a small passerine bird found in desert regions in North Africa, the Middle East and the Arabian Peninsula.
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 three wheatears.
For the published work see: Anker 502; Balis, Van diverse pluimage 75; Nissen, IVB 932; Zimmer, pp. 626-628.
  • Number: 1060016
  • Dealer: Speculum Orbis Nauticum

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