Keith Hansen: Birds of the Sierra Nevada

June 29 - August 25, 2013

Bolinas artist Keith Hansen's studio and gallery has been located in the Bolinas Museum building for the past twenty-two years. For over a decade visitors and friends have watched with admiration as Hansen created 1,400 meticulously detailed portraits of individual birds in graphite, watercolor, and color pencil. Now the Museum is honored to present this long-anticipated exhibition of selections from his 70 plates of illustrations that are the culmination of his fifteen-year project. These illustrations represent 320 bird species found in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Hansen explains, “For any single state, California boasts the largest number of bird species recorded. The majority can be found in the mountain of the Sierra Nevada Range.” Selections from these illustrations are featured in the recently released book Birds of the Sierra by authors Edward Pandolfino and Edward Beedy. 

Creeper and Nuthatches 2007 graphite and watercolor on paper

Creepers and Nuthatches, 2007, graphite and watercolor on paper, 16 3/4 x 10 inches


Hansen is a passionate ornithologist and gifted wildlife artist who leads national and international birding expeditions. His self-enforced standard of precision comes from his own acute eye for detail and being friends with some of the best birders in the world. Just across the street from the wildlife-rich Bolinas Lagoon, Hansen’s studio and gallery at the Bolinas Museum faces the courtyard where a fountain, birdseed and hummingbirds feeders draw countless birds. His list of birds seen or heard strictly from the 16 x 23 feet of his gallery and doorstep holds the record for the most birds seen from a single room in all of North America!