Princeton Audubon Yellow-billed Cuckoo
John James Audubon’s Birds of America
Princeton Audubon Double Elephant Edition of 1500.
26 1/4 x 39 1/4; Condition: Mint
Nature is never out of style, so ... Feather your nest!
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“Of all the full-size facsimiles of Audubon's prints, those from Princeton Audubon Ltd. come the closest in appearance and quality to the originals. Combining this with their very reasonable cost makes Princeton Audubon facsimiles winners for those looking to acquire some of the most dramatic American natural history images ever produced." - Chris Lane, Philadelphia Print Shop West, appraiser on Antiques Roadshow.
Of our prints, William Steiner, author of Audubon Prints: A Collector’s Guide To Every Edition wrote, “True prints, true colors, incredible detail. Princetons are simply the finest Audubon facsimiles ever made!”
We purchased the actual antique originals in order to accurately produce this award-winning edition, giving you a connection to Audubon’s original work. Read more ...
In order to create this spectacular print, we needed to purchase the actual original. Measuring more than two feet by three feet, the birds are the same size as in life.
Princetons began with the purchase of the actual originals which were physically used in the production process. A giant camera with film the same size as the print took a direct-capture picture of the original, and this exact image was transferred directly to the metal printing plates. There are no other Audubon facsimiles which match the quality of Princeton prints.
Our prints have this embossed seal at the lower right of the paper ...
... and are pencil-numbered in the lower left under the printed script.
Here are the printing specifications ...
Princeton Audubon Double Elephant Edition •Double elephant (life size - 26 1/4 x 39 1/4) •Limited edition of 1500. •Pencil-numbered and embossed with the Princeton Audubon Limited seal. •Up to 11 color plates used. •Specially developed fade-proof inks. Absolute color fidelity to the actual original. •Printed on a 300 line. •Very heavy archival paper which is recommended by the Library of Congress for archives and is specially toned to match the actual color of the antique originals. •Registered to purchaser. •As permanently displayed at The Royal Society of London, to which Audubon belonged as a Fellow.
About the image itself ...
This print is based on a painting done in Louisiana in 1821 or 1822. Although cuckoos live almost entirely on caterpillars and seldom, if ever, eat butterflies, Audubon portrayed one of the birds seizing a tiger swallowtail. Joseph Mason probably painted the leaves and fruit of the pawpaw tree.
On December 10, 1826, Audubon wrote in his journal about the progress of the first proof impressions for Birds of America. "It is now a month since my work was begun...; the paper is of unusual size, called 'double elephant' and the plates are to be finished in such superb style as to eclipse all of the same kind in existence. The two plates now finished are truly beautiful. This number consists of the Turkey-cock [this painting has been chosen to prove the necessity of the size of the work], the Cuckoos on the pawpaws,..."
In seasons when caterpillars are abundant, cuckoos usually become common in the infested localities. They are especially fond of tent caterpillars and gypsy moth larvae, and with such plentiful food, the size of their broods seems to increase. Unlike the European cuckoo, American cuckoos only occasionally lay their eggs in the nests of other birds.