"Falling Bough" (2002)

"Falling Bough," 2002
Watercolor, gouache, ink and pencil on paper, 60 3/4 x 119 1/2 inches
Private collection, Tennessee
Courtesy Paul Kasmin Gallery, New York

"The passenger pigeons were the most numerous birds that ever lived in the history of the planet. It’s almost disturbing how numerous- billions upon billions of birds. It was a fecundity that was almost disgusting. I started thinking about a blame-the-victim kind of attitude you could take to that...to make it seem like they had it coming, that there was this disgusting empire of birds and that it was corrupt like Rome...that it was bound to fall. So I invest the passenger pigeons with every kind of sin that I can imagine. And the bough, this gigantic branch, is falling under their tremendous weight. Meanwhile they go about their bickering and their lusts and foibles and all the disgusting things that they are doing."
- Walton Ford