Sunday, March 12, 2017

Cats in Art: Cat and Kitten (Sir Edward Burne-Jones)

From my continuing weekly Sunday series of cats in art.  Having moved on from Stefano Zuffi's marvelous work, The Cat in ArtI am now using some ideas from Caroline Bugler's equally impressive book, The Cat/3500 Years of the Cat in Art.  You really should check out and/or own both of these wonderful works, easily available on Amazon or eBay (and I have no financial interest).

Image credit The Atheneum, Cat and Kitten, Sir Edward Burne-Jones, early 1890s, watercolor on plaster, 14" x 16", held in a private collection.

Bugler tells us:

Burne-Jones' granddaughter Angela recalled that the artist painted a series of scenes for her on the walls of the nursery where she slept when staying with her grandparents at their home in Rottingham, Sussex.  As a young girl, she would be made to stand in the corner of the room if she disobeyed her nanny's rules....the sight of her so dismayed her grandfather that "the very next day he took his paintbox into my corner and painted a cat and a kitten playing with its mother's tail, and a flight of birds, so that I might never be unhappy or without company in my corner again."

I tend to rail on sometimes about how precious artworks should be in museums for all to see, rather than in private collections.  But in this case I make an exception, for the painting is literally on (as in painted on, not hanging) the wall of a private residence.  Hopefully the home still belongs to the descendants of Sir Edward Burne-Jones and the watercolor is still making children happy to this day.

[Gary note: With my Cats in Arts posts, I encourage you to scope out the art appreciation site Artsy (I have no financial interest in the site, I just like it), where you can explore many aspects of the world of art.  You'll certainly be entertained and enlightened!]

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