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Barn Owl by Andrew Denman
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18 x 24" Acrylic on Cradled Board, 2015
Barn Owl in flight
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Anyone who follows my work knows that I’ve been on something of an owl kick lately. In fact, this piece is my sixth owl painting of 2015 and the third barn owl. Of course birds have long been my favorite subject to draw or paint, but there is something undeniably special about owls in particular, and Barn Owls are my favorite. Barn Owls are one of the most widespread owls around the globe, yet they sacrifice none of their mystery to their ubiquity, a fact testified to by the potent symbology, myth, and legend they have conjured in many diverse cultures. I suppose they appeal to me for this very reason; few subjects are as intriguing as those we know exceptionally well, yet which still possess the power to fascinate, thrill, and amaze.

I encountered this particular owl during a recent trip to England. My partner and I visited the International Centre for Birds of Prey in Newant, England, near Gloucestershire, a glorious facility with captive specimens of a staggering array of birds of prey from around the world. Better yet, all of their birds, from harpy eagles, to kestrels, to king vultures, are glove trained, and visitors to this special place are invited to watch the aerial displays. This barn owl put on a particularly amazing show. Though I have seen and heard them fly overhead at night many times, I’d never seen one flying in daylight, though in the wild they can and do hunt both nocturnally and diurnally. As often happens, an idea for a painting was born; my primary interest here was to capture the sense of graceful but deadly motion demonstrated by this memorable encounter.

Welcome to the online home for artwork by Andrew Denman, a California –based, internationally recognized, award-winning contemporary wildlife artist. Denman primarily paints wildlife and animal subjects in a unique, hallmark style combining hyper-realism with stylization and abstraction. His dynamic and original acrylic paintings can be found in museum collections on two continents and in numerous private collections in the USA and abroad. His clear voice, unique vision, and commitment to constant artistic experimentation have positioned him on the forefront of an artistic vanguard of the best contemporary wildlife and animal painters working today.
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