Sunday, January 26, 2014

Cats in Art: Tommy (Margot)

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.

Today was to have been the 7th post in a series on German painter Franz Marc. That will resume next week. Instead, today I want to feature a cat image I just saw over at the new visitor center at Gettysburg National Military Park.

Mister Tristan (the 6 year old human being, not the blog), the bride and I took advantage of a snow day this week to drive over to Gettysburg to see the refurbished Cyclorama. It's a huge circular painting, done in the 1880s, depicting the climax of the battle (it's a mind-bending 377 feet long, 42 feet high and weighs 12.5 tons!). See this National Park Service site if you are interested in more info.

Image credit Gary (photo of NPS display board) and NPS, Tommy, Antoinette Margot, 1885, oil on canvas, 51 cm x 66 cm, held by Clara Barton National Historic Site.

And Tommy's "owner," Clara Barton
[image credit Gary (photo of NPS display board)]

In wandering around the visitor center, I came upon a a display that depicted Clara Barton, famous for her nursing of wounded and sick soldiers during the American Civil War.  Down in the corner, I suppose to lend a personal touch, was the photo above of Tommy, Clara's cat. 

Per the NPS:

“Tommy” was Clara Barton’s beloved cat, and described him as her faithful friend of 17 years. The artist, Antoinette Margot, had worked with Barton during the Franco-Prussian War. She traveled to America and worked with Barton at the American Red Cross.

Tommy looked to be one cool cat, and perhaps in a sense a therapy cat.  He must have been a real source of comfort and peace for Clara, who I think otherwise would have been tormented and perhaps destroyed by the demons of the battlefield horrors she had seen.


1 comment:

  1. thanks to present Tommy painted by my old grand-aunty, antoinette margot
    chantal forestier