Ornithology refers to the scientific study of birds, including their physiology, classification, ecology and behaviour. Due to their visibility and colourful appearance, birds are a popular subject of both the sciences and the visual arts – photography in particular. With their pseudo-scientific approach hunter-collectors Geene & De Nooy defy the borders between these disciplines. Their classification of bird pictures exhibits the humorous outcome of creative and associative thinking, with every section of Ornithology opening new perspectives on birds.
Geene & De Nooy manifest themselves as rare birds in the world of bird photography, dominated as it is by people with the ‘classic’ aesthetic view. Many of the birds they shot are dead, others are representations and sometimes only their building material or excrement appears. Ornithology may be seen both as a photographer’s study of birds and as an ornithologist’s excursion into photography. The book is highly recommended by Charles Darwin, Harper Lee, Humphrey Bogart, Charlie Parker and Woody Woodpecker, amongst many others.
(coproduction with Arjan de Nooy: www.arjandenooy.com)