Mail art postcard. No. 4695…

But first…
Dulltown, UK: Today’s confused film star is Gel Mibson.
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Ah, another of my mail art postcards – a simple collage on bright card using clippings from that awful British TV listings magazine What’s On TV.

If I was asked to describe this one in a word, I’d think I’d say it was ‘compelling’.
Yes, that does sound a bit grandiose, doesn’t it? But what I mean is, that, for me, the image oscillates.
‘Oscillates’ Dave?’
Yes, I’m torn between seeing this head as that of some kind of furry cat, and then of a female human, and then back again – pretty well evenly, shall we say 50-50? Even though a very large percentage of this image is furry face, and only a small percentage of it is lips – they are female lips, aren’t they? I mean, they do seem to have red ‘lippy’ on them!
Logically one ought to perceive this as a big cat’s face with silly human lips stuck on, but those lips are so very eye-catching that they draw us in to see the thing as maybe some glamorous woman with an ornate fluffy ski-mask on – perhaps she’s off to a posh party somewhere?
What I think is going on here, is that us humans are programmed by thousands of years of evolution to survive by always being on the lookout for beasts sneaking up on us with the intention of eating us; we constantly search for eyes which might be watching us, and also mouths that might bite bits off us. So, with looking at faces we always go for eyes and mouths first – noses and ears don’t really bother us – noses and ears are generally not that much of an obvious threat.
What strikes me about this random juxtaposition is the relation between the cats eyes and the human mouth – the spacing is just right, it looks so normal, and we easily accept this mad combination as being real
I wonder if she growls and purrs – perhaps she had a bit part in that Hollywood flop ‘Cats’?… (Click here.)

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
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