Seven Queens of the Feather is a series of oil paintings by Taranaki-based artist David Le Fleming.
Le Fleming often paints on reclaimed objects. Surfaces in this series include a brass firescreen, ornamental copper plates and a vintage Jaguar car bonnet. A twist on past work involving large-scale human portraits, Seven Queens of the Feather presents well to do chickens with elements, form and pose drawn from 16th-century European portraiture. The result is a colourful, cheeky line-up of hens surrounded by heraldry, landscape and other status symbols of aristocracy.
The series came out of Le Fleming’s experience of Covid19 lockdown as a newly minted chicken owner, reflecting from the relative safety of New Zealand on how the human ‘pecking order’ played itself out in many countries’ response to the pandemic. A reflection on ones metaphorical castle, self importance, and self esteem relative to ones bubble.