Now on View - "New Strike Off An Old Plate: Reprinting the Tell-tale Godwit"
March 12 through April 30, 2023
On August 1, 2002, a small crowd watched in silence as Michael Aakhus, an art professor at the University of Southern Indiana in Evansville, ran an inked copper engraving plate through a printing press. As he lifted the edge of the paper, revealing the image of John James Audubon's "Tell-tale Godwit" (Plate 308 in "The Birds of America"), the audience broke out in applause. They had watched history in the making: for the first time in 164 years, a new print had been pulled from one of the few remaining original copper plates used in publishing "The Birds of America." The last people to create a print of the plate would have been the employees of Audubon's engraver, Robert Havell, Jr., in 1838. Audubon Museum curator Don Boarman later wrote, "for those of us in attendance, it was a moving experience."
Learn more about this historic day and the process of pulling a restrike in this new small exhibit at the Audubon Museum. "New Strike Off An Old Plate: Reprinting the Tell-tale Godwit" celebrates the extraordinary event through photographs, a scrapbook with news clippings, and one of the restrikes made by Professor Aakhus.
Dive deeper into the topic of the restrikes through the Curator's Blog on the Friends of Audubon website: http://www.friendsofaudubon.org/.../audubon-restrikes.../.
Questions? Contact Audubon Museum curator, Heidi Taylor-Caudill, at [email protected] or 502-782-9716.
*Photos used in the exhibit were provided by USI Photography and Multimedia.