80 color plates
5-3/4 x 8-1/4
Produced in collaboration with The Bluecoat, Liverpool’s oldest arts center, Alec Finlay’s Specimen Colony draws on an exhibition and permanent open-air installation of participative public sculpture that creates a series of colorful colonies formed by nest boxes—functional and familiar objects created by Finlay whose form suggests the schematic figure of a bird. Finlay’s work transposes the colors of exotic birds found on foreign postage stamps onto these nest boxes—playfully commenting on Liverpool’s global links of trade and migration while contemplating the city’s avian emblem. This collage of postage stamps and their remarkable birds that illustrate them not only evokes communication, correspondence, and collecting, but also makes Specimen Colony an unforgettable and lushly illustrated artist’s book that stands on its own, aside from the events surrounding the exhibition.