My fascination with birds continues with this painting with the title being borrowed from the nursery rhyme. The rhyme has been immortalised by the Counting Crows in their song ‘A Murder of One’ which is one of my favourite songs.
Since the illness and subsequent death of both my elderly parents last year, I have found birds cropping up in my work, particularly owls and crows. I did a bit of research on the symbolism of each bird and found that the owl and the crow have a strong association with death in many cultures. I think this association with birds came from the emails Mum and I exchanged when she was in hospital and later on in the home. We live on the river and as such, the birdlife is prolific, and I was telling her the only bird I hadn’t seen was a swan. I was extremely excited one day to see a lone swan majestically sailing up the river but it made a very strange honking sound – turned out my swan was a goose, which amused Mum no end. That goose hung around until about a week after Mum died and I haven’t seen her since.
Oil on Linen