• Skumur


George Miksch Sutton 1958

George Miksch Sutton was a prestigious ornithologist, known for his artistic bird images in drawings and watercolour. He was born in 1898 in Bethany, Nebraska, USA and died in 1982 in Oklahoma. He produced a number of scientific papers as well as a number of popular books with illustrations of birds and fledglings. His interest in the fledglings is unusual since more often than not it is the adult birds that become the subjects of drawings and books of this kind. On display here are the following: Barrow's Goldeneye ( Bucephala islandica), Eurasian Golden Plover ( Pluvialis apricaria), Red-Necked Phalarope ( Phalaropus lobatus), Redwing ( Turdus iliacus), Great Skua ( Stercorarius skua) and Puffin ( Fratercula arctica).


Sutton was a renaissance man in the sense that he sought knowledge equally from science and art. He did extensive field research, primarily in the Arctic region, including Iceland, which he visited in the summer of 1958. Sutton felt that his stay in Iceland was a true adventure according to his descriptions in the book Iceland Summer that was published in 1961. The book contains many watercolours of Icelandic birds, especially fledglings. As a token of his gratitude for the assistance he received during his travels in Iceland, Sutton gave the Icelandic Institute of National History 41 watercolours. One of Sutton's pictures in the book, a falcon on a ledge, was used for reference in the design of a 25 ISK falcon stamp that was published in 1960. For promoting Iceland and spreading the Icelandic cultural inheritance the president of Iceland awarded George Miksch Sutton with the Order of the Falcon in 1972.



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The Icelandic Institute of Natural History,

The Icelandic Museum of Natural History