Presentation of the artworkSituated in the Botanical Garden’s Shrub Garden, the painted-steel sculpture was designed after an illustration by Vittorio. The artwork portrays a standing bird, its right leg bent, its neck and head pointing forward, and its tail raised. Thin, curved steel feathers adorn the bird’s tail. Highly textured and roughly made, the bird’s body shows the traces of the welding seams created by the assembly of many sheets of steel. The bird’s simplified U-shaped body and geometric, angular shapes give it a humorous, even caricatured, appearance. Although its head is small, its round eyes, sharp beak, and massive feet give it a balanced silhouette.
Associated eventsVitto Vosilla commissioned the sculpture in 1961 to decorate the front of his restaurant, Chez Vito, situated on Chemin de la Côte-des-Neiges until 1965. He then donated the sculpture to the Ville de Montréal and it was moved to the Botanical Garden the same year.
The son of Paul-Émile Borduas, a signatory of the Refus global, Paul Borduas studied at the École des beaux-arts de Montréal in 1961. He assisted Jean-Paul Mousseau in the creation of the mural integrated into the Hydro-Québec building and acted as an assistant at the first Symposium international de sculpture du Québec, where he produced a work with Ivanhoë Fortier and Yves Trudeau. Borduas abandoned his art career at an early age to teach at the Université du Québec à Montréal. In 1967, he executed a sculpture for La Ronde at Expo 67. His works are included in a number of Quebec museum collections.