Artwork / Baby Sees ABCs / V Is for Vulture

turkey vulture committee of three, wildlife painting
Gwenn Seemel
V Is for Vulture
acrylic on panel
14 x 14 inches


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The first names embedded in this image are Valentino, Valerie, Vali, Vanessa, Vasco, Vashti, Vee, Veda, Vega, Vemvane, Venus, Vera, Veronica, Vertamae, Victoria, Vida, Vilma, Violet, Vincelle, Vincent, Vipin, Virgil, Virginia, Vishnu, Vivian, and Vladimir.

Though it’s not done yet, Baby Sees ABCs has already been criticized as having some not very “child-friendly” animals. I admit that this feedback saddens me.

The idea that kids need to be protected from learning about our fellow inhabitants on this planet—and especially inhabitants that we often encounter like turkey vultures—is at the core of what’s wrong with using traditional Christian notions to determine what we teach. Just because fundamentalists of this faith believe that humans are separate from and better than all other species doesn’t mean that it’s the only way to see the world. I can’t help but wonder if children would find these gentle recyclers of the natural world scary if we didn’t instill that fear in them.

You can watch the making of V Is for Vulture.

turkey vulture art
detail image