Many things have fascinated me over the course of my life, not necessarily because I understood or understand them fully, but usually because there is some element of incomprehension – the idea of Schrödinger’s cat, for example, or a mysterious book that is actually a treasure hunt. While the first led to many… odd creations of art that included cats perched pensively in boxes in outer space surrounded by snakes and spiral galaxies, the second had gorgeous paintings of their own that I can still remember clearly (though I never solved the riddle itself).
About a year ago, I found myself returning to the paintings of Masquerade – though subconsciously. I was playing around with cats contorted into unusual positions by virtue of being forced into a small box: the frame, as it were. The whole idea was that you could place it any way you like, there was no proper up-down orientation. Later, as it happened, I had to adjust the subject matter to more closely align to a colleague’s preferences, and the final painting is of a horse (of course), about 10cm x 15cm.
And although one’s own paintings should look familiar, there was something more to it that wouldn’t stop poking at the back of my brain, until I remembered this image:
Not quite the contortioning example of equine flexibility I came up with, but one can see the signs of influence. And it’s always fascinating how these sorts of little things can come together to become something new and different.
Anyway, I like my horse-in-a-box, and one day I will also complete the originally-intended cat-in-a-box.
To be honest, I always pictured Schrödinger’s poor cat as something of an unfortunate astronaut.