Every bird is essentially an elaborate container of life, like us however there is perhaps a more subtle dimension out of the reach of science. Some species in particular have a quality of voice, behaviour or plumage particularly suggestive of this, and a painting of the Subalpine Warbler seeks to illustrate the case.

Painting of a Subalpine Warbler (Sylvia cantillans)
Subalpine Warbler and Pyx

The Eastern Subalpine Warbler (Sylvia cantillans) is widespread in southern Europe and this bird would have been found in Perugia in the 13th century, as it is now. Such a merry bird, vital, skittish and aware of his presence. The watercolour depicts this beautiful warbler next to a French pyx of a similar period now in the Victoria and Albert Museum. The visual corollary is related not just to their beauty but also to their purpose.

Watercolour on paper (2019)