Carol Ronin Thompson
OF THE BIRD Exhibition
Fred Simon Gallery of The Nebraska Arts Council
Nests are the subject of this exhibition. My interest in birds began as a child, too young to cross the street, gathering feathers on my block in Fremont, Nebraska. I marveled at the beauty and colors of the feathers and thought about the miracle of flight.
As an adult, I volunteered with the North American Nest Survey and helped band birds at the Pioneer Park Nature Center west of Lincoln. My husband, Art, and I were the first people to keep the Center open in the evening. While there, we would watch the birds and hunt for nests. We have fed birds and collected nests at our home for forty years.
My interest in birds required more research. In 1990, I went to Cedar Point Field Station below Lake McConaughy to study ornithology with Paul Johnsgard. In 1963, I took a zoology course from him and in the 80's, he lead a trip to view Sandhill Cranes that I organized.
Painting images of nests delight me, probably because for a brief time, I feel a greater affinity with the bird. When I paint a nest, I think about the bird and how he (she?) decided which stick, leaf, piece of thread or blade of grass would start the nest.