Sunday, May 22, 2011

Cats in Art: Holy Family With a Cat (Barocci)

From my continuing weekly Sunday series of cats in art. I'm using some ideas from the coffee table book, The Cat in Art, by Stefano Zuffi.

Image credit here. Holy Family With a Cat (or, The Madonna of the Cat), Federico Barocci, 1577-80, Oil on wood, 44" x 40", held by Musee Conde, Chantilly, France.
Zuffi comments:
For Barocci, the cat is the very symbol of the family, domestic intimacy, peace....Barocci also experienced nausea, convulsions, and psychosomatic problems that forced him to put down his brushes.  It is well known that stroking and looking after a cat are among the most effective natural ways to calm the nerves.

Well, duh!

The babies are John the Baptist (with the finch) and of course, Jesus.  No play date is complete without a cat.

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