Isobel Wood is a talented young artist whose subjects are often animals (leaning heavily toward cats — we like that) and whose medium is the challenging oil-on-paper.
Her paintings and drawings of cats are as delicate as the soft paw-falls of a cat stalking prey, with just the right touch of humor — a combination that expresses the wonder of watching a cat balance on a high shelf and the amusement of playing with a cat with a laser pointer. Questioning what it is about cats that we love so much, Isobel painted a series of cat “mog shots,” in which she expertly renders different cats’ heads without their faces. The pieces invite the viewer to add your own face to examine how much you project on your animal friends.
We could say that the do-it-yourself collaboration between artist and viewer parallels the relationship between people and pets. We’ve domesticated cats so that they thrive when they live with us; in return, we reap the benefits of furry companions who love us no matter what. We are unfinished without the other.
So is it us really putting our faces on our cats, or our cats putting their ears and whiskers on us?
Images via Isobel Wood’s website