Janet Austin and Emily Moorhead-Wallace



Lincoln Park
Located across from Lincoln Park Zoo’s Farm-in-the-Zoo


Nestful lives in an oak tree that is over 100 years old and has reached the end of its lifespan. The tree is breaking down around previous damage and losing the ability to support itself due to the loss of foliage for hydration and food. This tree will slowly collapse under its weight and crumble to become the nutrients for fauna, flora, and other future trees.

Located on the vibrant urban lakeshore and similar to the buildings that surround it, this artwork supports high density living. To support the tree’s changing state, the artists increased habitats for native bird and insect species. Houses are made of reclaimed and repurposed lumber with the ideal dimensions for various birds including chickadees, nuthatches, swallows, wrens, woodpeckers, warblers, flickers, starlings, sparrows, flycatchers, bluebirds, and titmice.

The birdhouse sculpture supports increased biodiversity, reflecting the city’s varied residents. The artists hope Nestful will provide shelter over the winter of 2021 and they look for family nesting next spring and for many springs to come.

About Janet Austin 

Janet Austin received her bachelor’s degree in Fine Art from Metropolitan State University in Denver, Colorado, and her master’s degree in Printmaking and Art History from Villa Schifanoia Graduate School of Fine Art in Florence, Italy. Austin creates in sculptural media, including
glass, mosaics, concrete, bronze, and steel. Her work has graced public spaces across the country, including parks, zoos, botanic gardens, plazas, and transportation hubs. Her pieces explore the relationships and connections between humans and nature on a monumental scale. Her sculpture “Attached” of a wasp on a nest with a poem is installed in Evanston on the Lakefront trail near Dempster. Currently she is president of Chicago Sculpture International.

About Emily Moorhead-Wallace 

Emily Moorhead-Wallace is an art and artist advocate in Chicago, Illinois. She earned a BFA in sculpture from Miami University of Ohio and an MFA in interdisciplinary fine arts from Washington University in St. Louis. Moorhead’s work is exhibited nationally, predominately in the central U.S. She has been a featured instructor at various institutions including Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, and Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, among others.
She has been an artist in residence at the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, Virginia, FugScreens in Chicago, Illinois, and the Springer School & Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. Recent projects include her “Stationary Effort” series of kinetic, performative sound sculptures which have been exhibited at the Cincinnati Arts Association Alice F. and Harris K. Weston Gallery, the Miami University Art Museum in Oxford, Ohio, and the Cube Gallery at VAE Raleigh, North Carolina.