Cats in Japanese and Western Art

26.02.2022 - 04.09.2022

▪️ On February 26, 2022, World Cat Day, the Manggha Museum of Japanese Art and Technology invites you to the new exhibition “Me. Cat. Cats in Japanese and Western Art” depicting as broadly as possible representations of cats. The exhibition is a continuation of projects dedicated to the portraits of nature in art “Kachō-ga. Images of Flowers and Birds in Japanese and Western Art” (2016) and “Botanical Explorations” (2020-2021). On Feb. 17, admission to the exhibition is free❗.

▪️ This first exhibition in Poland and Europe to present this subject, which is so fascinating and close to us, brings closer not only the phenomenon of the domestic cat (Felis catus), but also recalls its wild relatives. It is a part of a series of shows showing the contact of cultures and aesthetics touching upon the problems of interculturalism. It poses questions about the status of the cat, a living and sentient being, in the 21st century.

▪️ The starting point for this idea are masterful ukiyo-e woodcuts from the collection of Feliks “Manggha” Jasieński depicting “cat issues” and contemporary Japanese gadgets, pop culture signs, including maneki-neko, Hello Kitty, and Filip Pągowski’s designs for Rei Kawabuko’s Black Comme des Garçons.

▪️ In the exhibition space they will be juxtaposed with the Western tradition of depicting the cat in art – paintings, prints, sculptures, posters, book illustrations and collages. We will meet both incarnations of well-known cat characters, such as Puss in Boots or Behemoth from “The Master and Margarita”, and disturbing visions of cats by contemporary Polish artists.

▪️ The exhibition is complemented by a bilingual Polish-English catalog illustrating as broadly as possible the subject matter, and a book – an anthology of texts about cats in Japanese literature, illustrated with original drawings by young Polish artists, made especially for the exhibition.

▪️ The exhibition will be accompanied by a seminar dedicated to the attitude towards animals in various cultures, which is expressed, among other things, in the forms of language used in relation to them.

▪️ The exhibition will feature works from many museum and private collections (including the Scientific Library of the Polish Academy of Sciences and the Polish Academy of Sciences in Krakow, the Faculty of Fine Arts in the University of Warsaw Library, the National Museum in Krakow, Poznan, Szczecin, Warsaw, Wroclaw, the City Museum in Wroclaw, the Leon Wyczółkowski District Museum in Bydgoszcz, the Museum of Silesia in Opole, the Art Museum in Lodz).
Idea, scenario and arrangement of the exhibition: Anna Król
Graphic interventions: Kaja Mucha
Coordination: Natalia Buchta Stochel
The exhibition was co-financed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

Location: Manggha Museum of Japanese Art and Technology, Maria Konopnicka Street, Kraków, Poland
Date: Exhibition duration: 26.02.2022 – 04.09.2022
Opening: from 10:00
Admission: 20 – 30 PLN



Muzeum Sztuki i Techniki Japońskiej Manggha, Marii Konopnickiej, Kraków, Poland


20 - 30 zł EUR

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