Into the mind of a cat: Feng Tang’s exhibition opens in SZ

Source: Shenzhen Daily | EyeShenzhen | Yang Mei | 2024-06-08

Be it your pet cats at home or stray cats you encounter on the street, cats always soothe people’s hearts amid the hustle and bustle of urban life.

From now until July 31, “I’m a Cat,” a Chinese painting and calligraphy exhibition presented by Feng Tang, a renowned Chinese contemporary novelist, poet, artist and expert in corporate strategic management, will lead visitors into the world of a cat and encourage viewers to take a pause from day-to-day life and to see the world through the eyes of cats. The exhibition is being held on the second floor of UpperHills shopping complex in Futian District.

The entrance to the “I’m a Cat” exhibition hall is designed as a white sculpture outlining the silhouette of a cat. Photos by Yang Mei

This mesmerizing exhibition in Shenzhen, the first stop of Feng’s national tour, presents nearly 90 of his captivating calligraphic works and paintings, marking the largest collection ever featured in his solo exhibitions.

Covering an area of 700 square meters, the exhibition is divided into four sections, namely, spaces for paintings and calligraphy, photo shooting, handicrafts making, and a gift shop.

From the moment you step into the exhibition hall, you’re transported into a world of cats, each with its own unique story to tell. The journey begins with a white sculpture outlining the silhouette of a cat, setting the stage for the captivating feline encounters that await.

Paintings of cats on display at the exhibition. 

As you venture further, you’ll discover cats in various forms and expressions, each embodying a different facet of feline existence. There’s the Chair Cat, lounging nonchalantly on a chair, exuding an air of relaxed contentment. The Unhurried Cat, captured in mid-stride, reminds us to slow down and appreciate the present moment. The Working Cat, diligently focused on its task, reflects the hustle and bustle of modern life. The Zen Cat, radiating tranquility and wisdom, invites us to seek inner peace. And the Night Owl Cat, wide-eyed and alert, mirrors the nocturnal habits of some of our feline companions.

But the cat-themed journey doesn’t end there. The exhibition also features chairs with cat-shaped holes, providing a playful space for your own feline companions to join in the fun.

A visitor poses for a photo under a huge cat paw at the exhibition.

At the center of the exhibition, a huge pink and white plush cat paw hangs in the air, attracting visitors to take Instagram-worthy photos. Following the cat paw, visitors can enter an enlarged cardboard cat house with a large cat scratcher cardboard chair inside. Visitors can take a seat, rest, and share their stories with cats on post-it notes.

“The Unhurried Cat.”

During a video link with attendees at a preview event May 31, Feng shared that the exhibition is inspired by Japanese novelist Natsume Sōseki’s early 1900s classic “I Am a Cat,” in which a supercilious feline narrator describes the lives of various middle-class Japanese people.

“The Working Cat.”

The artist encourages viewers to see the world through the eyes of a cat, reflect on human foolishness, and get recharged when feeling down. “I hope that this exhibition can help visitors unwind and learn from cats’ good habits, such as ‘eating and sleeping well’ and ‘doing things themselves and not troubling others,’” Feng said.

Date: Until July 31

Tickets: 88 yuan/one person; 128 yuan/two persons (Children under 1.2 meters are free of admission)

Booking: WeChat miniprogram “猫眼” or “大麦”

Venue: 2/F, UpperHills, Futian District (福田区深业上城二楼)

Metro: Line 10 to Donggualing Station (冬瓜岭站), Exit E