This is a mysterious collection of works that has been in hibernation for well over a century. These curios have been collectively titled “CAT WORKS”.
Their origin is not known. This cabinet of curiosities had lain in an abandoned coal cellar, within a forgotten steamer trunk until 1909, when it was discovered by my grandfather. He became the first curator of this bizarre, almost surreal, collection, which includes over 200 hand-colored photographs, daguerreotypes and glass plate negatives as well as notes, letter fragments and other cryptic and arcane communication references.
They defy definition and even, in some cases, description. Certain pieces appear to have futurist elements, while others have obscure historical footnotes. Almost all reflect a stark understanding of place and self awareness.
Inexplicable subject matter abounds. For example: the cult of the machine, the symbolic arrangement of elements, and the society of narcissism. There are also analogies and speculations of philosophical, scientific, naturalist tendencies. Many oddities are unexplained.
The following are selected excerpts – equally mysterious – from my grandfather’s journal:
There exists a shadow reality where rules of biology have drastically diverged. How this has come about is matter of debate; most believe that it was dreamed. In this scenario the ostensibly benevolent yet ruling species is feline. Others exist.
A broadcast mutation gene has mixed a group of organisms and made the species capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring, a MARVEL of biodiversity. Homo-sapiens in their original form have disappeared from this stage, but are NOT forgotten. Indeed, they are admired, copied, even at times worshiped. Flotsam and jetsam of the originators have washed ashore. Various concepts and ideas are held in high esteem.
This reality appears to be stuck in a pocket of time that ripples from the early to mid-twentieth century.
Through family inheritance this collection has come into my hands. After a considerable internal debate I have decided to release a limited selection, while preservation, classification and analysis continue. It is my hope that you will find them as beautiful, curious and mysteriously satisfying as I have.
About Cat Works
Cat Works represents my attitudes, my beliefs and is mixed generously with my sense of humor. However, (as I'm sure you've noticed) that the actors in my melodramas have the HEADS OF CATS!
Are these the surreal snapshots of the imagination? Or...are they something more? The hy-bred creatures shown here are completely self-aware. They offer no apology for their existence.
In fact their existence is unique. Their society, their moral code their very history ALL mirror the viewers'. BUT there is a predatory under-current that permeates the collection. Fang and claw...just out of sight, reminds us of our base nature and our more primitive urges.
Further, it is because of this existence that we are reminded of what Mark Twain said... "if man could be crossed with the cat it would improve the man, but it would deteriorate the cat."
Then again these may just be, the surreal snapshots of the imagination.
This Just In:
Dangerous and whimsical, full of randonish factoids! Cat Works entertains on many levels. Just because you can't understand it, doesn't mean it isn't true.
-Reviewed on Flickr