The largest species of falcon, the Gyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus) is most commonly found on Arctic coasts and around the northern islands of Europe, North America and Asia. The male bird can grow to a height of 60cm (2 feet) and have a wingspan of up to 130cm (more than 4 feet). The colour of the plumage of the Gyrfalcon varies considerably according to its habitat, from all white in some Arctic locations to a varied mottling of brown, as depicted here. For centuries the Gyrfalcon has been highly prized as a hunting bird, and it was used for this purpose by the Vikings, which may explain why it has been adopted as the national symbol of Iceland.
Using the full 360mm (14 inch) diameter of the fine bone china Elmley Bowl, Bronte’s artist depicts a pair of falcons against a dramatic mountain landscape. The bowl’s size gives scope to depict the magnificent wingspan of the birds, together with every detail of their eyes, bills and the texture and colouring of their splendid plumage. Working by hand directly onto the smooth, glazed surface of the bowl, the artist builds the design stage by stage using specialist ceramic colours, with the bowl returning to the kiln to be fired after each application of paint. The final touch is to add a band of 22 carat gold around the rim, and you can also choose to include a hand-painted personalised inscription on the base at this stage too.
Bowl Height: 115mm
Bowl Diameter: 360mm
Painted by Tony Young