I just got word that my friend Hans Windgassen, artist and pigeon man, died in Pennsylvania this week. I knew he had been having heart trouble lately but he passed it off to me as not very serious. Born in Germany, he lived and taught in Pennsylvania for many years. Although we could argue about trivial things like politics our mutual love for pigeons, nature, and art cemented our friendship. He painted two large paintings for us in his unique style (impressionism with just a dash sometimes of expressionism?) and gave them to us as gifts. He also supplied the Barb pigeons whose genes run in my loft.

Here he is with me on a visit a few years back.

A couple of his pigeon portraits– he loved to paint the “color breeds”.

“Les Girls”, our reigning queen and princess.

Me beside his portrait of me and some of my passions. He flattered me by making me skinny; ironically, PD and exercise have since this photo whittled me down to become more like the painting…

He is survived by Barbara Polny, and our thoughts go out to her in this sad time. I think some readers have paintings by him as well, so maybe we can get more later…

6 thoughts on “Hans”

  1. Thanks for posting this, Steve. I just heard the sad news via Jake S. Hans and I recently caught up via e-mail and I'm glad we did because this was unexpected (at least to me because he seemed to be in great spirits). I enjoyed seeing the pieces he painted for you. I'm happy to have a few of his works myself. I hope Hans finally found that warm, dry place he always dreamed of moving to.

    Will Brown

  2. I remember Mr. Winn from high school in Port Jervis, NY. He had a free spirited approach to art class, and I actually do recall his pigeon paintings that he had dozens of sketches and the like around the space. He had a computer in his classroom that was slow, even by 2002 standards.


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