It seems Japanese cat lovers are an artistic bunch. Or maybe Japanese artists love cats. Whichever way round, there is so much kitty-inspired artistic expression here in Tokyo that "Meow" - a huge exhibition of cat-themed art held at Harajuku's Design Festa gallery - is now in its fourth year. The show has totally taken over both wings and spills out onto the streets in front and back.
At the recent exhibition, some sixty artists showed new feline-themed pieces, including photography, illustration, graphic design, accessories and figures. Fancy a leather strap with cute cat head and tail that can be curled round a finger and worn as a ring, or twisted around a pencil, or, um, worn as a ring?
Or, how about fluffy cat hindquarters, back legs and tail, that hang on a wall, inviting you to peer around the corner into the next room in expectation of seeing forelegs and head emerging on the other side? Is it a kiss-my-ass riposte to trophy heads on walls? Or just a whimsical fluffy cat tail disappearing into a wall like Alice down a rabbit hole? Unfortunately the artist was not in attendance to answer our probing queries.
For those looking for more conceptual, minimalist cat art, cha.tsuchi's groundbreaking miniature cat shrubs in flower pots casually mixed East and West by combining bonsai and topiary. Atelier168 offered purses in colorful fabrics with elegant cat silhouettes, and little bags of catnip instead of potpourri. Another artist was selling her own hand-made hats and ear muffs with cute cat ears, must-have items for the feline-inclined.
[Note: this article originally appeared on Shinkansen.com.]