Empty Nest by Deborah Chabrian

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Deborah Chabrian

Empty Nest


36.83 x 50.8 cm | 14 1/2 x 20 in


  • Honorable Mention / Still Life

This painting began when I discovered the birdcage, an amazing relic I found in the attic of a nearby mansion, where it was all but forgotten. I loved its form, the rusted metal and flaking paint of it’s surfaces. I knew I wanted to paint it. I set it up in my studio window where it was bathed in soft light. I could see through the cage bars to the outside landscape. I added an empty birds nest I had collected, along with broken eggshells. Drawing it out I began to formulate the narrative for 'Empty Nest' in my head. I added birds in flight on the wallpaper and an open door to the cage and a dropped feather. The visuals reflected my thoughts on time… at a time in my life as a mother, I felt the changes coming, when children are testing their wings and leaving the nest.