Horses and Birds M. C. Escher 1949
Horses and birds is a woodcut print by M.C. Escher done in 1949. Mr Escher was born in 1898 in Leeuwarden in the Netherlands. He did not consider himself an artist but a graphic designer. Woodcut is a technique where an image is carved onto a block of wood. The raised surfaces are the printing areas. The surface area is covered with ink using a special roller, so that no ink goes into the recessed sections.
This piece of art as the name suggests is about horses and birds. The black birds interlock with the white horses in a symmetrical pattern involving four horses and four birds. The horse at the top of the print , along with the bird at the bottom almost disappear into the background and depending on your focus as to whether your eyesight picks them up, although the top white horse and the bottom black bird have the background showing through them and are the only ones to do so. The lines of the print mostly point in an upward direction, especially on the black birds wings which along with the textural effect give the notion of flight. There are also textured areas up the top of the print shaped to give the impression of a setting or rising Sun in the background. The tone of the image is contrasting between black and white. The darker toned areas fall predominantly towards the bottom of the print with the lighter areas up the top. Thie effect helps create the sky and the ground. The black and white speckling effect in the centre of the print creates a depth to the print making it look three dimensional as if the horses and the birds are in the middle of a large paddock. The artist uses a diamond shape to encase his animals into centre frame. To me the picture is symbolic of animal migration. The animals don’t look like they are in a hurry and the horses have a slight smile on their faces as if it is a leisurely experience, although I don’t know if that is what Mr Escher intended.
I think the interpretation is...