Monday, May 31, 2010

Another Birding Trip to the DeCordova Sculpture Park

On Sunday, May 16th, we had our second trip of the season to the DeCordova for a combination birding tour of the sculpture park. We were greeted in the parking lot by territorial Gray Catbirds -- making sure we knew this was their territory and we were just visitors! It was a chilly morning, and warblers were moving through the trees surrounding the parking lot. It promised to be a nice 2 hours, with the ensuing warbler neck to prove it.
Catbirds and Orioles seemed to be vying for our attention at every turn....
And it was definitely harder to focus on the art works than in April when there was so much less song. While everyone was trying to find the singing Canada Warbler, I did get another shot of one of my favorites pieces, Ammi'el, by Boaz Vaadia.
I realize every time I visit the sculpture park that I'm drawn to some of the same pieces over and over and actually look forward to visiting them like I would an old friend.

However, the birds were demanding our attention as well....even the more common species, like this American Robin.
One of the pieces I never tire of is Jim Dine's Two Big Black Hearts. I notice new things about this piece every time I visit and I love being on a trip with new people who haven't seen it before. Everyone seems to have a different reaction when they view it up close and personal.
One of the big features of this trip was the breeding behavior by the Baltimore Oriole. We even got to see a female constructing a nest not too far from Joseph Wheelwright's Listening Stone -- another one of my favorite pieces.
The male kept a close watch from the porch railing of the brown house near the school.
Back in April as the leaves were just coming out, Richard Rosenblum's Venusvine, made of bronze really blended into the trees behind the sculpture. However, now that the greenery is in full force, this bronze piece stands out so nicely against the background of trees.
A couple of new pieces that are part of the current exhibition by Chakaia Booker, In and Out. If you've been to the sculpture park previously you may have seen two other pieces by her....No More Milk and Cookies and The Conversationalist. Her new exhibition which just opened mid-May features more of her sculptures, including.....
Square Peg made from rubber tire and wood.
and Take Out made of similar rubber tire materials and stainless steel. Both pieces stand relatively close to the main entrance. Now unfortunately, since our tour ends before the museum even opens, we didn't get to see the full exhibit inside. Guess that means we'll need to take another trip to Lincoln soon!

On the way back to Worcester, Mark & I took a quick tour of Oxbow where I was able to shoot these mating water striders....
The Corn Speedwell was everywhere.....
But the highlight for Mark was a young Northern Banded Water Snake he was able to pick up. Of course the extremely pungent odor meant I needed to get photos quickly since this is not a snake you want to cuddle with. But you have to admit that the patterning is amazing.
All in all, a wonderful little morning trip. And if you want to see some of the other sculpture you can check out my blog from the April trip which had additional photos of the some of the artwork.


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