Feline Finds from the Fine Arts Library Image Collection

Author: Aimee LaBrie

In case you were unaware, Penn Libraries offer an unbelievable collection of digital images–from sports collections, to old covers from The Gazette—the collection has over 6,000 art images and artifacts.  I enjoy all of the archives, but my favorite is most definitely the Fine Arts Library Image Collection; a digital space  with over 180,000 images and half a million slides.  You can search for images based on the artist, the century, the title of a work, or even by geographical location.

A search under “Chestnut Hill” yields  varied images of the Esherick House, while a search of “contemporary artists” pulls up photos of Claes Oldenburg’s The Clothespin and Labyrinth by Robert Morris.

Of course, this made me immediately wish to do a search under the terms for one my favorite mammal: cats. This particular query resulted in 51 finds. Here are the top five.  You can conduct your own search for images, text, or other info by visiting this particular collection, or by going to Digital Penn today.

1. Saddest listing, except really, it’s not, because Ancient Egyptians  believed that cats were holy, which is why they were mummified. I concur:

Mummifed Cats from Egypt, circa 525-332 BC, from Paris: Louvre AF 9461

2. Least Likely Friendship to Occur in Real Life:

Monkey and Cats detail,Yi Yuanji 2nd half 11th century (Chinese), Taipei: National Palace Museum

3. Cat Torture (as drawn by da Vinci):

Sketches of a Child Holding and Playing with a Cat, a Cat (recto), Leonardo da Vinci, London, British Museum, inv# 1857-1-10-1


4. Cat as Meatloaf (i.e. no visible legs):

Calico Cat under Peonies, detail, Song Dynasty, Taipei: National Palace Museum

5. Cat Misbehaving:

Cat and Flowers, Eduard Manet, Paris: Bibliotheque Nationale

BONUS! Cat Showing Holiday Spirit:

LaBrie Archival Collections, circa 2011

Happy archiving!


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Filed under Aimee L., Campus Life, Library

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