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August 2011

NC Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh, NC, Offers Works by Matt Zigler

The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh, NC, will present the exhibit, Pigeons: Portraits and Narratives, featuring works paying homage to pigeons and their unnoticed beauty by Matt Zigler, on view in the Nature Art Gallery, from Aug. 5 - 28, 2011. A reception will be held on Aug. 5, from 6:30-8:30pm.

This series of paintings grew out of an unexpected fascination Zigler developed with pigeons while a graduate student at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia. When a uniquely colored pigeon “flipped a switch” in his mind Zigler began researching and painting pigeons until finally they became the subject of his Master’s thesis.

“Until then, pigeons were just an unnoticed part of the landscape,” Zigler explained. “The natural world is full of little dramas, narratives and moments of profound value. Sometimes we notice them, often we don’t. This happened to me on the streets of Philadelphia.”

Zigler also created a fictional character, Red Lahore, based on himself and his obsession with pigeons. Lahore, named for a breed of pigeon, led to the creation of a natural history exhibit about pigeons as a companion piece to Pigeons: Portraits and Narratives.

Zigler says pigeons definitely don’t get their just due. “For many, these much maligned birds are viewed as ‘rats of the sky,’ not worthy of our notice or respect. This was not always the case as pigeons figure prominently in history and literature and were studied thoroughly by Darwin as he developed The Origin of the Species.”

Zigler, an art teacher and Junior High team leader at Noble Academy in Greensboro, NC, has exhibited in numerous group shows since 1998. He also participated in Darwin Days 2011 at the Museum and artSPARK PODS, SparkCON, Raleigh in 2010. Zigler lives near Chapel Hill, NC.

The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences documents and interprets natural history of the state of North Carolina through exhibits, research, collections, publications and educational programming. Find more information online at ( The Museum is an agency of the NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Dee Freeman, Secretary.

For further information check our NC Institutional Gallery listings, call the gallery at 919/733-7450, ext. 360.

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