One time Guinness brand character, hero of children’s book Two Can Toucan, and real-life flamboyant from the Ramphastidae bird family, the toucan is many things to many people.
To nineteenth century ornithological artist John Gould it was a captivating specimen and with some forty species in need of cataloguing, a beguiling challenge.
Publisher Taschen is re-publishing Gould’s study of these rainbow-beaked creatures of the neotropics, as a collection of 51 prints, Family of Toucans – which was originally published as a monograph.
Gould, who’s work is referenced in Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, was along with his peer James Audubon one of the most prolific ornithological artists of his generation.
The Family of Toucans by Jonathan Elphick is published by Taschen on 21 September as a loose leaf collection of prints priced £69.99