caticons-book-sandy-lerner

What if you had an (almost) unlimited budget to surround yourself with art, furniture, clothing, accessories, household objects, books and pretty much anything else cat related? You would have Caticons!

Caticons: 4,000 Years of Art Imitating Cats chronicles Sandy Lerner’s 30-year-journey through art catalogues, the far corners of the world and the internet for the one “cat thing” she did not already have. Lerner is best known as the founder of Urban Decay and co-founder of tech company Cisco Systems. She is a huge animal lover and promoter of animal welfare, and has established Ayrshire Farm and its retail division, Gentle Harvest, to promote sustainable and humane anti-factory farming. She is getting ready to launch MeatMe, a line of 100% meat based raw pet food sourced and made from humanely raised animals (more information about MeatMe right here on The Conscious Cat very soon!)

Caticons documents Lerner’s personal collection, which began during a catless time caused by living with her new husband, who was highly allergic to anything with fur. Lerner is well aware of her good fortune of being able to afford to indulge in the luxury of collecting so many beautiful pieces. However, her collection is not based on the value of a piece – her only criteria for collecting are “(1) is it a cat, and (2) do I like it?”

cat-painting-caticons
Chattes Siamoise on Chaton, Theophile Alexandres Steinlen

This is an absolutely gorgeous book Weighing in at a hefty five pounds, the book features hundreds of beautifully composed full color photos.

cat-napkin-rings
Cat Napkin Rings

Even though Lerner provides details about the artist, provenance, context and other details for each piece, this book is not about art. It’s about cats. And what I liked most about this book is that it’s about happy cats. “…there are no images of unhappy cats, unlucky cats, or even unsociable cats” in the book, writes Lerner. “My cats are happy, healthy and loved, in life and in art.” Along with information about the cats featured on the art, Lerner also shares anecdotes and stories (and some photos) about the cats in her life.

cat-painting
Two Playful White Cats and a Butterfly, Gabrielle Rainer-Istvanffy

This book is a celebration of the beauty of cats, and a feast for the senses. I believe that admiring art not only makes you happy, it also has transformative and healing powers. And in this regard, Caticons combines the healing power of cats with the healing power of art – what could be better? And even though most of us won’t be able to afford a collection like Lerner’s, owning this book is (almost) the next best thing to owning all the beautiful pieces featured in it yourself.

cat-collection
Turquoise Temple Cats, Chinese, late 19th/early 20th Century

For more information about the book and to order, please visit http://www.caticons.com.

Photos by Nate S.Rhodes, Dan Chung, David Spector, and Tesh Parekh, used with permission

FTC disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher. Receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.