Cat & Mouse - Pen and Wash by Harrison Weir (1893)
Original drawings or paintings of cats by Harrison Weir are extremely rare, and due to his recognition as the 'Father of the Cat Fancy', are often considered more significant than those of other subjects. In truth, he was also famous as a poultryman and a consummate expert in that field, so some of his early poultry paintings are highly prized and of more than equal value.
What appears to be unique about this piece, is that we can usually, in most cases, match a drawing whether it be in pencil, or pen and ink, or pen and wash, or in watercolour, to a named and/or dated publication. But in this case, we have not yet found a publication in which this specific drawing has appeared. It is therefore considered to perhaps be a study, drawn from life or from memory, and probably set aside for possible use at a future time.
A closer look will reveal that with a very few simple strokes of the pen, he has successfully suggested another cat at the top of the bank, observing the 'goings on' down in near the pond, where the subject cat has chased a mouse into the water, and then paused, cautious about entering water.
This delightful original piece is now preserved in The Harrison Weir Collection and will be featured in our planned Biography of Weir, yet to be completed and published.
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