14. Kererū, NZ wood pigeon (Hemiphaga novaeseelandiae)


Kererū, NZ wood pigeon (Hemiphaga novaeseelandiae)
Original painting

The kererū has been voted 'Bird of the Year' in Forest and Birds annual competition. It is known affectionately as the world's most beautiful pigeon. It is a large bird and familiar in most parts of the country along with the distinctive sound of it's wings beating in flight. As one of the larger avifauna species it is an important frugivore helping to distribute the seeds of large stoned fruits such as kōpī - the fruit of the karaka tree (Corynocarpus laevigatus), tawa (Beilschmiedia tawa), taraire (Beilschmiedia taraire) and pūriri (Vitex lucens); whose fermenting fruit causes intoxicated behaviour in the animal to the surprise and amusement of many observers.

These original works are from the the exhibition 'A Few' - the third installment in an ongoing series of natural history illustrations depicting native and resident species of Aotearoa, New Zealand - by Erin Forsyth. They may be viewed in person at the exhibition taking place at the TSB Wallace Arts Centre, Pah Homestead in Auckland October 30 - December 9.
A variety of native flora and fauna are represented in this collection with special attention given to the manu/birds (Avifauna), pekapeka/bats (Chiroptera), pepe or pūrerehua/butterflies (Lepidoptera) and rakau/trees. It is the artist’s intention to continue to grow this series, providing insight to the unique biological (bio) diversity of Aotearoa New Zealand.
Details of this work appear on the poster 'Taonga O Aotearoa', produced in collboration between the artist Erin Forsyth and Predator Free NZ Trust.

All works have been painted in Schmincke Horadam gouache on Arches hot pressed, 300GSM, 100% cotton paper by the artist during 2018, and have not previously been exhibited unless specified. Exact dates of completion can be found in pencil on most works.

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