Cat Art Occupies a Niche at Wellesley’s Jewett Art Gallery

A cat views an art exhibition about cats
July 26, 2017

Photo: Batya Pearlstein views "A Cat May Look," an art exhibition curated by her human.

Cats are a four-legged study in paradoxes. They purr. They can cuddle and frolic with their owners like toddlers discovering the world around them. But they can also be standoffish brooders, independent and willful. 

This cat character is the theme of an eclectic art exhibition from the Wellesley College Art Department named “A Cat May Look.” The exhibit, which was highlighted in the Boston Globe’s “The Ticket” art listing on July 21, will run until Thursday, August 10, inside the Jewett Arts Center. A reception for the 22 artists—some of whom are Wellesley faculty and staff—and cat lovers is scheduled for Friday, August 4, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Samara Pearlstein, Gallery Director, said her motivation for staging this exhibit was to strike a light-hearted tone and encourage people to focus on the life of cats.

“Cats can be incredibly joyful,” said Pearlstein, a cat owner. “They are beautiful and very independent.  They live in the moment.”

Works on display:

Corrin BarnesNo Touching, watercolor, acrylic, colored pencil on paper, 2017

BJ BeckAlways on the Wrong Side of the Door, oil on wood panel, 2017

Allison CekalaCassie (1992-2004), wood box, keys, locket, cremation ashes, 2017

Meg DuguidBox, single-channel video, 2012

Gerard EuellCoco, archival inkjet print, 2017

Emily HarrisSelf Portrait with Woman, oil on paper, 2016

Cody JustusNote (Cat Power), acrylic and gouache on unprimed canvas, 2017

Catherine KehoeOlive, oil on linen on panel, 2017

Sarah MalakoffUntitled Interior (B in white room), digital C print, 2011; Untitled Interior (fur wall), digital C print, 2012

Nancy McCarthyCoco #1, watercolor on paper, 2017; Coco #3, watercolor on paper, 2017

Christian MeadeBIG D E N G CATTO, cardboard, acrylic, felt, catnip, 2017 (pictured below); BIG BOI, felt and catnip, 2017

John NeylanMy Life as a Cat, single-channel video, video game modification of Grand Theft Auto V, 2017

Liza OliverOlympia, archival inkjet print, 2017

Samara PearlsteinBatya in Gold, archival inkjet print, 2016

Katherine RuffinPut Me DownLet Me Out, and Feed Me Now, letterpress printed wood and metal type on Mohawk superfine paper, all 3 pieces 2017

Judith SchutzmanHovering, ink and watercolor on rice paper, 2016

Kimberley A ShawEmmy the Loopy and Local resident in the Crusader-era fort in the town of Akko, Holmes stereocards and two different stereoscopes, 2012 and 1999 respectively

Angi ShearstoneOrange You Glad (You Have an Orange Cat)?, watercolor and watercolor pencils on illustration board, 2015

Carl VestweberFamily Tension, Leia in the Garden of Earthly Delights, and Business Meeting in the Garden of Earthly Delights, mixed media on paper, all 3 pieces 2017

Andrew MK WarrenZoe, Jamaica Plain, MA, archival inkjet print, 1997; B, Rotterdam, NL, archival inkjet print, 2014

Julie WeaverCat Scratch, oil on canvas, 2014

Thomas Ray WillisBeach House, canvas, wood, acrylic gesso, metal staples, cat litter, plastic litter scoop, 2017

Cat in art exhibit