Monday, April 18, 2011

If I Were a Rich Cat Lady

I would stand proudly in the showroom at Bonhams in London and bid on David Hockney’s ceramic cat, which the artist created in 1955. Although the April 20 auction features Hockney’s prized works from five decades of creativity, international press has focused repeatedly on this earthenware striped cat who wears the vintage coloration–mustard and black—of the midcentury.

And while in London, I would stop in at Studio Voltaire, which is presenting the first solo exhibition in a London gallery of work by contemporary artist Laura Aldridge. I noticed a small reproduction of a detail—of a cat, of course—from one of Ms. Aldridge’s works while reading the New York Times magazine recently, and I ventured to the artist’s website immediately. According to the gallery’s literature on the artist, Ms. Aldridge creates installations made of tied-knot sculptures and screen-printed cutouts of cats being cradled and petted. But then the language on art becomes, well, a bit confusing to this Cat Lady who customarily pets ten cats daily: “The fragmented imagery of the act of stroking and cradling emphasizes the act of touching, rather than the animal being touched.”

Query of the Day: Put simply, why not say that cats respond affectionately to our touch?

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