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John James Audubon (artist)



John James Audubon was a largely self-taught arist-naturalist whose intent was clearly scientific. His passionate involvement lifted his visual interpretation beyond mere literal transcription. Sharing the reverence for nature of his contemporaries, the Hudson River School painters, Audubon broke away from the tradition of isolating birds in stiff profile. In his stunning watercolor studies, he concerned himself with the distinguishing characteristics of shape, plumage, and habit.

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John James Audubon (born Jean Rabin; April 26, 1785 – January 27, 1851) was an American ornithologist, naturalist, and painter. He was notable for his extensive studies documenting all types of American birds and for his detailed illustrations that depicted the birds in their natural habitats. His major work, a color-plate book entitled The Birds of America (1827–1839), is considered one of the finest ornithological works ever completed. Audubon identified 25 new species.