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Birds in Art

Since 1976, the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum has organized Birds in Art annually, seeking to present the very best contemporary artistic interpretations of birds and related subject matter. Two- and three-dimensional artworks in all media other than crafts and photography are eligible. Approximately 100 works are selected by a jury review of digital images; see the Birds in Art Prospectus for details. Artwork for the annual exhibition is selected each spring. Artwork from 113 artists from throughout the world will be included in the 46th annual Birds in Art exhibition 2021, on view Saturday, September 11 through November 28, 2021. Learn more about the 2021 Birds in Art exhibition via the artist list.  

This annual exhibition opens to the public on the first Saturday following Labor Day. The Birds in Art exhibition opening is part of Wausau’s Artrageous Weekend.


A fully illustrated, four-color catalogue accompanies each exhibition; purchase online.

Master Wildlife Artist

More than thirty-five artists have been recognized as Masters in tandem with Birds in Art. The 2020 Master Artist is New Mexico artist Timothy David Mayhew. Those honored in recent years include Alan Woollett, Cindy House, Don Rambadt, Karen Bondarchuk, Barry Van Dusen, Terry Miller, James Coe, John Busby, and James Morgan; see the complete list.

Birds in Art Tour

Following the fall debut of Birds in Art at the Woodson, 60 artworks embark on a national tour.

Wausau’s Artrageous Weekend

Events in 2020 were cancelled due to coronavirus concerns. Organizers are planning 2021 events but have not yet finalized what might be altered in 2021. Updates, when available, will be posted here. Immerse yourself in a weekend packed with art at four different venues spanning both sides of the Wisconsin River in Wausau on the Saturday and Sunday after Labor Day. Enjoy Birds in Art opening weekend at the Museum, Festival of Arts and Center for the Visual Arts in downtown Wausau, and Art in the Park at Marathon Park on Wausau’s west side.

Birds in Art 2020 Photo Album

Although Birds in Art 2020 opening festivities were canceled as a Covid-19 precaution, the exhibition did open Saturday, September 12, 2020. See photos of opening day, exhibition artwork installed in the galleries, and a sampling of artists’ contributions to Project Postcard.

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The Museum reopened in early February, after a proactive closure.

Before visiting, check for any updates and what to expect.