Cats have been the source of legends, myths and mysteries for thousands of years. The same qualities that have inspired magical imaginations about cats for centuries also inspire me artistically.
In “The Mystery of Cats”, an exhibit of new paintings at Second April Galerie, I take a direct look at their mystery and the qualities that make cats, particularly black cats, so intriguing.
There is a psychological depth to cats that is both alluring and intriguing, and this makes them an interesting focus for artwork. Cats can be very loving and tender, but they can also be independent and self assured. They have a paradoxical character that makes them very interesting as companions and also great subjects for artistic inspiration.
The exhibit is both playful and evocative, with colorful images of spirited felines in different environments. A serious message is conveyed by these stately creatures, however.
Although fun and colorful, the paintings also implore us to reconsider the myths that claim that black cats are evil and connected to a sordid subculture.
Because of the legends connecting black cats to bad luck, they often are innocent victims of a society that casts them off or leaves them vulnerable to abuse. Black cats not only fall prey to mischief-makers seeking to cause mayhem around Halloween, they also are unlucky in finding homes.
Around the world, animal shelters consistently report that black cats are often passed over for other cats by people looking to adopt a new pet.
“The Mystery of Cats” artworks and messages that go with them encourage viewers to enjoy the mystery of cats, yet they also challenge us to respect that cats are wonderful pets and worthy of our compassion.
The artworks will be on display at Second April Galerie at 324 Cleveland Ave., Canton, OH beginning First Friday (October 5, 2012) and will remain through October 27. If you are in Canton, I hope you will stop in and see them.
In conjunction with the exhibit, I will hold a “Create-a-thon” on Thursday, October 18, where I will create artworks in the gallery for 12 hours (9 am – 9 pm). The works created during the Create-a-thon will be auctioned to raise money for the latest Okey’s Promise: Art for a Cause project.
More info will be forthcoming about the Create-a-thon. Also, “The Mystery of Cats” artworks will be posted for sale here on the website soon. Stay tuned!