Colin McCahon

The care of small birds: Muriwai

The care of small birds: Muriwai by Colin McCahon

Artwork Detail Request a print

Gannets swarm above the pillar of rock that is Motutara Island, while two strings of rosary beads hang above a shifting horizon. Colin McCahon painted in series, building bodies of work around the big themes of life and death, time and loss, history

and place. The Care Of Small Birds: Muriwai, exhibited in Necessary Protection (1977), explores the young gannet’s leap of faith and first flight from the top of the Muriwai cliffs.

The care of small birds: Muriwai
Production date
synthetic polymer paint on unstretched jute canvas
1730 x 925 mm
primary: signed & dated l.r.cnr., oil, "C.McC. '75" also signed & dated reverse l.c., oil, "COLIN McCAHON/ 1975". secondary: titled l.l.-l.c., oil, "THE CARE OF SMALL BIRDS: MURIWAI.".
Credit line
Chartwell Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, 1985
Accession no
Other ID
cm000274 Catalogue Number
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
On display

If you’re interested in reproducing this artwork, you can enquire here.

Request a print