An obnoxious cat

”Firmin-Girard enjoyed great popularity at the time the Impressionists were revolting against the highly detailed, academic style that he practiced. However, Firmin-Girard shared the Impressionists’ interest in painting modern life, especially scenes along the River Seine. In this work, Parisians enjoy a Sunday brasserie overlooking the river at Bas-Meudon southwest of Paris. At left, the artist depicted his daughter stroking an appreciative cat as her brother chats with their grandmother…” (from the accompanying tag)

An appreciative cat? I don’t think so… What I see, is a mean character, eyes narrowed, probably plotting its next attack; I can almost hear it hissing and growling at the dog across the street.

Marie-François Firmin-Girard (1838-1921)
Sunday at Bas-Meudon, 1884
Oil on canvas

Portland Art Museum

June 9th, 2018

See || Purr || Listen

Su-Mei Tse (b. 1973) in collaboration with Jean-Lou Majerus
Sound for Insomniacs, 2007

5 Lambda digital prints on semi-glossy photo paper, two stools with integrated MP3 players, screens, and headphones.

For Su-Mei Tse, photographs alone are not enough to capture a cat’s unique personality. Here she presents large close-ups of five different cats, each with an expressive presence similar to traditional painted portraits, along with recordings of each cat purring. 

Because every cat’s purr is unique but they all sooth, relax and may act as natural sleeping pills. Works for me, anytime!

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

May 4th, 2017