The third and most rare of our Robert Bateman's prints is this "Early Spring - Bluebird", signed and numbered 653/950 limited edition lithograph. This is double matted and under glass. The print is 13" x 24" and the frame is 25" x 34". Bateman originals sell for upwards of $12,000 and this print is rarely seen on the market.
"The eastern bluebird is found in most of settled North America east of the Rockies. The population increased after the coming of white man and the clearing of the forests. The bluebird likes open country with scattered trees and woodlots. It is a bird of 'edge conditions', the edge of a field and a forest. When I was a boy, bluebirds were much commoner in our area than they are now. A sighting now is a special event. There are different theories for their scarcity today. One is that clearing of land is more complete with steel rather than wooden fence posts. Another is that starlings and house sparrows, which also nest in holes, have competed for nesting sites, and being more aggressive, have beaten out the bluebirds. There is also the theory that pesticides in modern agriculture have brought down the population. In my mind, I associate bluebirds with early spring and our pioneer forefathers. This is why I thought it suitable to place this bird on a pump handle. In my area, there are still farms that were built over a hundred years ago. In some cases, the house and barn have been torn down or burned down, and the pump is all that is standing as a relic of our past. I have tried to capture one of those soft, damp days of early spring, when the snow patches are retreating and the puddles are advancing." Robert Bateman
Born in Toronto, Robert Bateman has been a keen artist and naturalist from his early days. Bateman's work has received international critical acclaim and has attracted an enormous following. His artwork is included in the collections of HRH The Prince Charles, HRH The Prince Philip, the late Princess Grace of Monaco and Prince Bernhard Of the Netherlands. He has had many one-man museum shows throughout North America, including an exhibition at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. His honors, awards and honorary doctorates are numerous; he was made Officer of the Order of Canada, that country's highest civilian award. He has also been the subject of three books and six films. Bateman's art reflects his commitments to ecology and preservation. He has become a spokesman for several environmental and preservation issues and has used his artwork and limited edition prints in many fund-raising effort.
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