In 2009 John Busby was honoured by the prestigious Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum in Wisconsin, USA, becoming their Master Wildlife Artist for that year. The museum has run its flagship Birds in Art exhibition since 1976 attracting the very best wildlife art from the USA and internationally, but a Master is not designated every year. After the opening in Wausau, WI, the exhibition tours major centres in the USA for the subsequent year, bringing the very best of bird art to thousands of people.
John was invited to present nineteen of his works and gave a talk on The Subtleties of Drawing. His long-time friend and artist Derek Hyatt wrote an introduction which makes the 2009 Exhibition catalogue one of my treasured posessions.
The opening and the Master Wildlife Artist ceremony is a jolly affair taken over several days, and, as this blog by Andrew McGivern, curator of exhibitions (on September 24th, 2009) attests, it is a particularly good time to meet people. Making Friends through Birds and Art
In 2014 John returned to the Woodson Art Museum to make a speech introducing that year’s Master Wildlife Artist, Barry Van Dussen. A large group of artists made a memorable trip out to the nearby International Crane Foundation as Catie Anderson, curator of education detailed in her blog Memorable Artists ‘in Action’ October 8th 2014.
In early 2018 the family presented John’s sketchbook of a previous visit to the USA and Canada to the Woodson Art Museum for their archive. Sample pages can be seen below.