Crazy about cats? You have company! Cats are possibly THE most popular internet subject for memes, instagram, youtube, and cutesy kitsch.
Now, they’re trending as a serious theme in the art world. Three New York exhibitions (one now on view and two opening soon) focus on felines: The Cat Show at White Columns (open through July 27), Divine Felines of Ancient Egypt at the Brooklyn Museum (opens July 24), and Balthus: Cats and Girls—Paintings and Provocations at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (opens September 25). Exploring the provocative history of cats, the shows give them solid footing in art history from ancient statuary to 21st century painting—from Balthus to Elizabeth Peyton, by way of Andy Warhol. But are these formalist art experiences enough for serious cat lovers?
Apparently not. A viral phenomenon in the Upper Midwest to seems to have trumped the East Coast’s take on cats. Last year, 10,000 people participated in the Walker Art Center’s one-night Internet Cat Video Festival. The now legendary #catvidfest gave critical levity (if not gravity) to the internet cat video phenomenon and became a touring show (latest stop: Jerusalem). On August 28th, CatVidFest returns for its second edition, this time at the Minnesota State Fair.