Title: Cat’s Talk – in yellow (from Cat’s Talk series)
Initial conception: 2004
Motifs: Representation of the face of a cat, based on an original canvas using simple black brush strokes, then digitally rendered in a series of bold colours.
Media: Digital images, limited edition print: (1445mm × 893mm)
First experiences with digital art
While studying at New York University in the late ’80s and early ’90s, I was strongly influenced by pop art, abstractionism, and installation art. At that time, I experimented with many digital still-life images including flowers, fruit, and even the Statue of Liberty.
“Time spent with cats is never wasted” Sigmund Freud
On my return to Tokyo, inspired by my interactions with our family cats Leo and Elza and intrigued by their very distinctive characters, I sought to capture their different facial expressions in over 100 original black and white canvases (410mm x 318mm). Having chosen my favourite model I digitized it and produced a series of bold, colourful images, which I subsequently converted to one-off full-sized prints. (1445mm x 960mm).
The work is, in a sense, a fusion of East and West, using lines and space, yet respecting the perspective of the ancient Greek golden rule.
“A cat has absolute emotional honesty, human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not” Ernest Hemmingway
The underlying concept of Cat’s Talk is communication and self-realization. We are often so busy with our work and everyday lives we don’t take time to reflect on who we are and where we are going. In the reflection of the eyes of cats, we see ourselves…
“What an artist is trying to do for people is bring them closer to something, because of course art is about sharing. You wouldn’t be an artist unless you wanted to share an experience, a thought.” David Hockney
Cats Talk was chosen as a project in one of the major financial districts in Japan by Hayao Kawai the Commissioner for Cultural Affairs, because he believes that art enriches the mind. To quote Kawai: “Just take your time and take a detour. There is always a little happiness to be found along the way.”
The most recent interpretation of Cat’s Talk is “Cat’s Talk Milano” which was exhibited by the M.A.D.S. Art Gallery in Milan Italy in September 2021. This work is in homage to my old friend from Milan, Enzo Mari (1932-2020) a maestro of design who created iconic products, sculptures, and installations that represent true milestones in the history of Italian design