Gerard Keulemans (1842-1912)
Keulemans was a Dutch bird artist and
He was born in Rotterdam and as a young
man collected animal specimens for museums such as the Natural History Museum
in Leiden, whose director, Hermann Schlegel, encouraged Keulemans and sent him
on the 1864 expedition to West Africa. In 1869, he was persuaded by Richard
Bowdler Sharpe to illustrate his Monograph
of the Alcedinidae, or Family of Kingfishers (1868-1871) and to move to
England, where he lived for the rest of his life.
Keulemans was the most sought-after bird
artist of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He was a prolific and
talented work-oriented illustrator. This image is from the last great bird
series,The Birds of Australia by G. Mathew’s and is rarer than John
Gould’s work on Australian birds, with only 225 sets done. It was the last
series produced to use hand colouring rather than colour printed lithography
for the illustrations.