Selective bibliography with comments

This list focuses on publications related to Audubon’s early drawings and the most accessible biographies in the French language.

  • Bourroux , Lucille (dir) – Jean-Jacques Audubon (1785-1851) Dessins de jeunesse Catalogue raisonné. Saintes, Muséum de La Rochelle & le Croît Vif, 2017 .

A catalog of the drawings from the collection of La Rochelle enriched, by several specialists, with innovative texts about Audubon’s youth, his artistic and ornithological activities as well as the history and analysis of the drawings of the collection.

Issued on the occasion of the exhibition of the whole collection in 2018. ☞ See catalogue

  • Dunand, Michèle – Des dessins inédits d’Audubon dans les archives du Muséum de La Rochelle. Nantes, 303 Arts Recherches et Création, 2003, n°82 : 11-13.

First record of the discovery of Audubon’s drawings in the archives of the Society of Natural Sciences of Charente-Maritime, kept in the museum of Natural History in La Rochelle. Michele Dunand quotes Didier Béraud and Chantal de Gaye as discoverers. Other names (JL. Lavigne, JY. Noblet, Y. Chatelin, B. Forkner, R. Olson, Don Boarman A. Morris) will be added after that first issue.

  • Olson, Roberta J.M. (dir.)- The early birds of John James Audubon. New-York, Master Drawings, 50th anniversary, 2012, 50 (4) : 439-494.

First study of the collection in La Rochelle by a specialist, the major contributor to the authentication of the drawings from La Rochelle and curator of the New-York Historical Society keeping the original watercolors for the Birds of America, Audubon’s major works.

  • Olson, Roberta J.M. (dir.) – Audubon’s aviary. The original watercolors for The birds of America. New-York Historical Society & Library, Skira Rizzoli, 2012.

The most recent sum on Audubon’s works. A rich catalog of the three-year long exhibition organized by the New-York Historical Society during which several drawings from La Rochelle were presented.

  • Forkner, Ben (dir. & préface), Couton, Patrick (dir.trad.)- John James Audubon Journaux et récits. Nantes, L’Atalante & Bibliothèque municipale de Nantes, 2T., 1992.

French translation of a great part of Audubon’s American writings. Remarkable foreword by Ben Forkner written long before the discovery of the drawings in La Rochelle was revealed in 2003.

  • Chatelin, Yvon – Audubon Peintre, naturaliste, aventurier. Paris, France-Empire, 2001.

One of two Audubon’s recent biographies published in French by a writer who made the journey to America and drew from American sources to which he refers in the footnotes. Written before the publication of the discovery of the drawings from La Rochelle. The author contributed to the authentication of the drawings.

  • Gourdin, Henri – Jean-Jacques Audubon (1785-1851) biographie. Arles. Actes sud, 2002.

Insists on certain cultural aspects of Audubon’s background in France as well as in the US and Great-Britain. Written before the publication of the discovery of the drawings from La Rochelle.

  • Chatelin, Yvon- Promenades dans une Amérique naissante, sur les pas d’Audubon le naturaliste (1803-1850). Paris L’Harmattan, 2013.