These cats are beginning to get a bit creepy!
Mick Reber was an accomplished southwestern artist who spent his career exploring the subconscious mind as both inspiration and subject. The backdrop of this painting is made from a collage of crinkled book pages and other printed materials. The titular “cat” emerges as a black shadow painted over this surface, making the texts illegible. The form of creature is echoed in the array of the collage with the legs traced along a matching angle and the elements at the top follow the curve of the cat’s spine.
This interplay leaves the viewer to wonder about the relationship between the figure and its surrounding negative space. Is the cat an apparition summoned by the contents of the texts, manifest from between the lines of the pages, or is it interposed, denying us access to the secrets it obscures. And similarly, is the directed stare of the cat simply vying for our attention to distract us from our work, or is it something altogether more sinister? Spooky!