Oil on canvas
Unframed: 99.1 x 81.3 cm (39 x 32 in.)
Bequest of Kay Sage Tanguy 1964.340
© Estate of Kay Sage / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
To maintain her own identity, Sage often refused to exhibit with her husband, also an artist.
Sage created this work, one of her most somber and desolate, shortly after the death of her husband, Yves Tanguy (1900–1955), who was also an esteemed Surrealist painter. The title likely refers to the folk legend that says a wild bird flying into a house is a premonition of death—an actual event that Sage experienced shortly before Tanguy passed away. Although for most of her career she was a prolific artist, Sage increasingly lost her momentum and inspiration during widowhood. Unable to endure living with her loss, she became reclusive and depressed, eventually succeeding in her second attempt at suicide by shooting herself in the heart.
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