33. Don Binney
Egretta Intermedia, Piha III
Mixed media on paper
67 x 50 cm
Signed & dated 1990
est. $35,000 - 45,000
Fetched $49,000
Relative Size: Egretta Intermedia, Piha III
Relative size

Private Collection, Auckland
Auckland Society of Arts, 1990

When considering this study of an egret, or heron, the viewer recognises it as a representation of a single bird, depicted in profile, in a particular spot. What makes this work compelling is that, departing from that initial moment of recognition, it takes on an undeniable energy - a vibration of colour and form - transporting the viewer away from any singularity of interpretation. It is apparent that the location is somewhat nondescript. A generic cloudy sky, rocky landscape, a uniform blanket of green grass on which the bird is perched. Is this indeed somewhere, i.e. Piha, or could it be anywhere? Now, the heron becomes more than a solitary creature. It may even be considered an emblem of its species, an idea reinforced by Binney's titular application of its Latin name, which gives it a scientific, documentary feel. Egretta Intermedia, Piha III also invites a more conceptual consideration of the relationship between paint and paper in Binney's work. The elegant outlines of the bird appear to move back and forth from the picture plane, giving the impression of a cut out and emphasising the strength and individuality of Binney's distinct modernist style