NYC Public Art Project Spotlights Climate Change, Birds and Audubon

Western Bluebird and Rufous-crowned Sparrow by Shawn Bullen.  Location: Amsterdam Tobacco, 1614 Amsterdam
Western Bluebird and Rufous-crowned Sparrow by Shawn Bullen. Location: Amsterdam Tobacco, 1614 Amsterdam
(National Audubon Society)
  • Townsend’s Warbler by ATM.  Location: 601 W.  162 St.

    Townsend’s Warbler by ATM. Location: 601 W. 162 St.

    National Audubon Society

  • Black-chinned Hummingbird by Ashli Sisk.  Location: 601 W.  149th Street

    Black-chinned Hummingbird by Ashli Sisk. Location: 601 W. 149th Street

    National Audubon Society

In New York City over the last few years, North American birds have been slowly appearing --- in large-scale murals --- to emphasize that threatented birds might be disappearing. The Audubon Mural Project is bringing attention to endangered birds with dozens of public murals, a fitting ode to the work of renowned 19th-century New York-based ornithologist and bird artist John James Audubon.

A collaboration between the National Audubon Society and Ari Gitler of Gitler &_ Gallery, the project to date has commissioned artists for 82 completed murals on Upper Manhattan walls. The aim is to install 314 murals, representing the amount of North American bird species that are under threat from climate change, according to Audubon’s groundbreaking Birds and Climate Change Report.

A portrait of Audubon viewing a cerulean warbler is a surprise on 149th Street as is a giant image of a common loon flying by moonlight, while a crow fish looms over a gas station at Broadway and 155th.

Harlem was Audubon's old stomping ground, and where the artist is buried, so the Audubon Society offers a walking tour of 30 murals there culminating with a visit to the artist's gravesite.

The mural project is supported by donations.

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