Children’s author and artist Jeannie Baker’s latest picture book, Circle, will be exhibited at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG) as part of a Newcastle Museum travelling exhibition.
Each year, Bar-tailed Godwits (Limosa lapponica baueri) undertake the longest unbroken migration of any animal when they fly from their breeding grounds in Alaska to Australia and New Zealand. They follow invisible pathways in the sky, which they have followed for thousands of years.
In order to create Circle, Baker made her own journeys across the globe to observe godwits – to the wild, remote landscapes of Alaska and then on to China and South Korea, where she was alarmed to see the enormous extent of the reclamation and rapid loss of mudflats which the Godwits (and other birds) depend on for food.
Baker’s work conveys the sheer wonder of this giant migratory ‘circle of life’, but also reminds the audience to reflect on the importance of the world’s remaining wetlands.
The combination of exquisitely detailed and textured collages with the fascinating science of our natural world has created an exhibition which not only celebrates the Godwit’s remarkable flight as it comes full circle, but also travels following the bird’s flight path at venues nationally and internationally.