Artist Statement: Songs of the Birds

Inspiration for these paintings comes from that elusive moment when somewhere in the fresh outdoor air and soft shadows, a bird song begins for all to listen.  Nothing stirs and time stands still while the singing continues.  Then, after a bit, time and place resume.

Within a species of bird, each has its' own variation of color and each has its' own variation of song.  No two birds sing exactly alike.    Representing a bird's song via the musical staff is difficult.  Most birds are pitched beyond the highest octave of the piano with slurs between the notes.  However, they sing in different keys and different measures of time. Each bird is researched individually for color and the song is interpreted while viewing the sonogram and listening to the sound recording.  The unequal chromatic distribution within each painting represent the bird's measure of time or rhythm, the pitch or frequency of vibrations per second, and the softness or loudness of the bird's call.  These paintings are a means of visually sharing with the viewer the transcendental beauty and awareness of nature's song.  The vibrating stripes and fuzzy edges may contain an instant of recognition.  It is about glimpsing "with" the painting instead of looking "at" it to bring into awareness an instant of remembrance.

See "EXHIBITIONS" for Current Exhibitions  

Reviews and Writings

Hodges, Michael H., Detroit Artists Market’s All Media Exhibition revels in esthetic tension”, Detroit News  (May 2014)

Olsen, William & Ridl, Jack, "Poetry in Michigan in Poetry", New Issues of Poetry & Prose Anthology,  Western Michigan University, (Publish date: September, 2013). 

Cantu, John Carlos, Riverside Arts Center Exhibit Links Science and Art - Via Birds, (November 7, 2011).

Johnson, Karen, Guests Sing the Praises of Carol Hanna's Bird Song, Review, , (April 15, 2011).

Cantu, John Carlos, Diversity Displayed in Spring Exhibition, Review., (April 4, 2010).

Studio Visit Magazine, Andrew Katz, Associate Publisher, The Open Studios Press, (March, 2009).

Cantu, John Carlos, Work Reflects Greater Latitude, Review.  Ann Arbor News, (September 14, 2008).

Studio Visit Magazine, Andrew Katz, Associate Publisher, The Open Studios Press, (February, 2008).

Art Showcase Magazine, John Himlin, Publisher, (Spring, 2004), pp. 10-11.

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Cornell, Lab of Ornithology
 Ithaca, New York

University of Michigan Hospitals
Ann Arbor, MI

Eastern Michigan University
Ypsilanti, MI

ABN AMRO World Headquarters
Ann Arbor, MI

Mectron Engineering Company, Inc.
Saline, MI

Various Private Collectors

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Awards and Honors


Honorable Mention

AAWA, Winter/Spring Show, Ypsilanti District Library, Ypsilanti, MI. Juror:  Denise Lisiecki, Director, Art School, Kalamazoo Institute of Art 


Third Place

Detroit Artists Market's Biannual All Media Exhibition, The Detroit Artists Market, Detroit, MI, Juror:  Timothy van Laar, Professor, Chairman Fine Arts at the College for Creative Studies.


Third Place 
Ann Arbor Women Artists', Riverside Gallery, Ypsilanti, MI,  Juror:  Ms. Nancy Flanagan, Ypsilanti, MI.


Third Place Award 
Ann Arbor Women Artists' Summer Exhibit, Riverside Gallery, Ypsilanti, MI, Juror:  Ms. Marcia Polenberg, Visual Arts Department, Univ. of Michigan, Flint.

First Place Award

Ann Arbor Women Artists' Spring Exhibit, Ann Arbor District Library, Ann Arbor, MI, Juror:  Ms. Brooks Harris Stevens, Asst. Professor of Fibers, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti.


Best of Show
Ann Arbor Art Center's 86th Annual:  All Media Exhibition, Ann Arbor Art Center, Ann Arbor, MI,  Juror:  Vince Castagnacci, University of Michigan Art Professor,

2nd Place AAWA
AAWA Summer Exhibit, Riverside Arts Center Gallery, Ypsilanti, MI, Juror:  Don Werthmann, School Visual Arts, Washtenaw Community College


Artistic Excellence Award
Eastern Michigan University
Ypsilanti, MI 

Gold Award
Our Town Art Show, Community House, Birmingham, MI, Juror:  Barbara Heller, Chief Conservator of the Detroit Institute of Arts


American Frame Award
Ann Arbor Women Artists
University of Michigan Hospitals

Honorable Mention
Watercolorists at EMU
Ypsilanti, MI

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Biography and Education

Carol A. Hanna
Born: Toledo, Ohio

BFA, Eastern Michigan University 2003, MA, Studio Art, Eastern Michigan University 2011 with studies at Washtenaw Community College and the University of Michigan.

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Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Extensive information on exploring and conserving nature.

Ann Arbor  Women Artists 
Large group of area artists with much diversity.

Riverside Arts Center
Arts and Events Gallery

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