to Gallery of Private Collections
Two Stories -- Common
22" x 30"
common nighthawk (Chordeiles minor) breeds throughout
North America from Canada to Panama except in the extreme north
and the deserts of the U.S. southwest and Mexican northwest.
Common but inconspicuous residents of many American cities, they
spend their days sleeping on flat rooftops where they also lay
their two eggs, usually waiting until sundown to take to the
air. At night even their strange buzzing chirp blends in with
their surroundings, resembling more the sound of some electrical
gizmo than the call of an actual creature. Their winters are
spent in South America. I love to watch them catch bugs over
the city on summer evenings and have always been struck by the
contrast of two worlds: birds above, and people below, both seemingly
oblivious to the other. Juxtaposing these two elements required
a bird's-eye-view, looking past the bird onto the wider cityscape
below. I had great fun inventing the city details as I went,
incorporating lame jokes and inside barbs at friends and acquaintances.
Close scrutiny even reveals a hint of my own face of the '67
Dodge van that served as my studio/home at the time I painted