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Ode to the Animal Artists

From the Polar Bear Tales, by Marc Franz 1880-1916. 

I envy the animals.

  • They don’t have to wear clothes.
  • They aren’t weighted by the tenuous lines that language produces.
  • And they get to be intoxicated in life without the hangover.

Artists have endevored to express that timeless irreverence animals so charmingly exhibit. The gap between what we see and what we know is something an artist can chase their whole life and not close. But when it comes to the art of animals, its a gentler more forgiving pursuit. We are rewarded by the softness in the animal’s eyes, the simple confusion of brutality when it comes their way— their joy of smell.

Humans aren’t a complete disaster compared to this purity. My rabbits likely would have been eaten by an eagle or hawk a few years back if I didn’t have those nifty cognitive abilities native to human beings to keep them safe.

I need to make mention of some of the greats when it comes to honoring the furry one’s amongst us.

Paul Auster: Timbuktu. A man’s life and the world from a dog’s point of view. This is hard to do, I’ve tried it!

Mark Doty: Dog Years. I’m reading this now and can’t put it down. Not even for a potty break.

Henry David Thoreau: Walden. All wildlife in repose of humanity; of nature.

Sharon Stiteler: Disapproving Rabbits. Exactly how it sounds.

Andy Riley: Bunny Suicides. Hilarious! Don’t try this at home.

Franz Marc: Paintings.  Fabulous expressionistic portraits of what is gentle in animals.

Tim Fitzharris: Wildlife Photographer. Check out the baby wolves and bobcats.

Pablo Picasso:  Drawings. The dog is one of my very favorites.

Albrecht Durer: Painting. Wabbit!

Marion Rose:  Canadian Painter Look for the Buffalo. Stunning color!

Tony Stromberg: Spirit Horses book, calendar. And his workshops in horse photography look really wonderful.


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