Why Paint Cats: The Ethics of Feline Aesthetics by Burton Silver, Heather Busch |, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Why Paint Cats: The Ethics of Feline Aesthetics

Why Paint Cats: The Ethics of Feline Aesthetics

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by Burton Silver, Heather Busch
     
 

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Why did a woman in California pay an artist $5,000 to paint her cat to look like a pig? What made a New York stockbroker spend even more than that to have the image of Charlie Chaplin painted on his cats posterior? WHY PAINT CATS reveals that, far from being an amusement for the idle rich, this seemingly aberrant behavior is part of a new art movement that claims

Overview

Why did a woman in California pay an artist $5,000 to paint her cat to look like a pig? What made a New York stockbroker spend even more than that to have the image of Charlie Chaplin painted on his cats posterior? WHY PAINT CATS reveals that, far from being an amusement for the idle rich, this seemingly aberrant behavior is part of a new art movement that claims to promote a better understanding of the cats in our lives. Following the international success of their previous collaboration of feline aesthetics, WHY CATS PAINT, Burton Silver and Heather Busch turn their scholarly attention to the cat as canvas. The authors detail all the latest trends in the movement, including the highly controversial Retromingent Expressionism, drawing conclusions that will provoke and amuse, startle, and enlighten. Exhaustively researched and lavishly illustrated, this insightful and engaging book raises important ethical questions and explores the rights of pet owners to reinvent their cats in the name of art.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Youd think a person would have better things to do with $5,000 than to have her cat painted to look like a pig. . . . I personally appreciate feline beauty without a brush, but for the person who has every art book, my bet is they dont have one showcasing cats as canvases.” — Atlanta Journal-Constitution “I would not paint a cat if someone paid me to do so. I would not paint a cat if Picasso rose from the grave and taught me how. If a cat represented the last piece of canvas on earth, I still would not paint that cat. I just know better. Sadly some people do not. . . . Im pretty sure its not a hoax.” — Jackson Clarion-Ledger“Suggests itself both as art and an art. Who am I to kibble?” — San Francisco Chronicle“Painted cats transform into art with a purrpuss.”— Las Vegas Review Journal“By the time you finish flipping through WHY PAINT CATS, the latest art-book collaboration by writer Burton Silver and photographer Heather Busch, youll have more questions than answers. Seeing Charlie Chaplins face painted on a cat’s rump has that effect.”—Heather McKinnon, Seattle Times“It felt wrong. I was appalled. Then I began to flip through the book, and was knocked back on my heels by the beauty of (some) of the works of art. A question Id never considered nestled in my brain:
Why not paint cats?”—San Diego Union Tribune “Kitty Porn . . . What a little tramp! . . . Always wanted to paint your cat like an alien but never had the balls to try?”—Maxim magazine
Publishers Weekly
While the popular and enduring Why Cats Paint (1994) profiled the creative output of house pets, highlighting tabbies and Persian long-hairs with smeary abstract canvases they ostensibly made, the authors' latest volume inverts the paradigm, and offers instead the cat-as-canvas. Rexes and Siamese sport rainbow colors on their faces and flanks or graphic designs on their hindquarters: cats are transformed into butterflies, or clowns, or furry American flags. Presented as the document of a developing art movement, the book features a potpourri of artists and their "schools" (Neo-Totemism, Semiotic Anthropomorphism, Avant Funk), pairing big photographs with faux-interpretive essays about each cat and artist. Perhaps the most amazing entry is a portrait of Charlie Chaplin, supposedly painted with peroxide and vegetable dye on the rear end of a ginger and white cat named Burger. Amusing as a novelty item if nothing else (and very amusing at that), the book also offers a gentle kick in the pants to the gods of art criticism: a cat painted like a fish, for example, succeeds in "redefining and blurring the relationship between fur and scale, fin and tail, in order to create a shared intent that transubstantiates the species and repositions the notion of symbiosis." It's all so weird that it's sort of irresistible. (Sept.) Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781580082716
Publisher:
Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony
Publication date:
08/28/2002
Pages:
96
Product dimensions:
9.55(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.25(d)

Meet the Author

BURTON SILVER is a cartoonist, inventor, and author of more than a dozen books, including the best-selling WHY CATS PAINT. Silver studied psychology and sociology at Victoria University. He lives in Wellington, New Zealand.
HEATHER BUSCH has been a visual artist for nearly 30 years and is drawn to perceptions and paradigms that expand and entertain her mind. She has a fine arts degree in sculpture and has become internationally recognized for her paintings and photography. She lives in New Zealand.

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Why Paint Cats: The Ethics of Feline Aesthetics 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
imnoartist More than 1 year ago
I saw this book at the office, and immediately had to find it at my B&N to have it! The colors are wonderful. It's fascinating and funny and I share it with all my cat-loving friends. It will "provoke and amuse, startle and enlighten" as the synopsis promises. Hilarious!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first recv'd some of the pictures in a e-mail thinking that someone just altered these pictures. What a AWESOME pictural of different cats and thier owners. I know that my cats would LOVE the attention that this would bring them. THANK YOU !!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
After I believed it the first time through, I realized much of the chatter was a terrific send up. I can probably do a similar job in Photoshop, but it'd be easier to paint my cats. I'm still not completely sure it's all digital. Wonderful stuff.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book has had everyone in stitches..It's so unique...I have never seen anything like it! The Princess is my favorite...but they really are all wonderful...I've gone through the book a good 20 times and still have yet to read any...so A+ on the photo's...great fun!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am amazed at the originality and creativity of these artists. And how did they get these cats to stay still longer enough to paint?! I have shown this book to several friends and they are absolutely fascinated by the beautifully and strangely painted cats. What a conversation starter! Cat lovers and artists alike will enjoy this book. This unique book is a keeper!
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you want to have a few good laughs, read this book! There are lots of great pictures of the different kinds of cat painting out there. Some people paint their cats to camouflage into the garden or even the couch. Some people paint their cats to scare away dogs, or warn humans that the cat is blind. Most people do it just because they're so stinking rich that they can afford to blow thousands of dollars on it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just found it sort of weird that people actually paint cats. The images were very neat but they seemed photoshopped which was kind of annoying