It’s time to stop coveting all the amazing cats on the internet and get one of your own.
Even if an actual cat is not in the cards, the next best thing is the Cat Painting Takedown, where about 25 artists will have two hours to create a masterpiece capturing the unique essence of the mascot of our modern era, all to be auctioned off for animal charities.
“It’s all levels of art, so you’ll see some stuff that’s really incredible and some stuff that’s hilariously naive, but either way it’s just as valuable. There’s every reason to love every one,” says organizer Matt Timms, who runs regular food and art competitions on thetakedowns.com and is also known in the Instagram art world as All the Bad Cats.
For the Cat Painting Takedown, which will be free to attend on Dec. 9 at Better Than Jam Store & Studio in Brooklyn, Timms is sticking to coordinating and emceeing (and likely making a pot of his vegetarian chili). Unlike his usual food-themed takedowns, where the best baker or mac ‘n’ cheese maker gets an award, Timms says when the competitors are artists, "it’s totally unpretentious, with the accent definitely on the party rather than a competition.”
Attendees get to watch the artists work while sipping brews from Lagunitas and browsing the venue, which is part gallery and part art supply store in case you need to heed some sudden inspiration.
There are about 20 artists lined up, including big names like Coney Island Circus Sideshow muralistMarie Robertsand Ample Hills’ master doodlerLauren Kaelin, but there are spots still available if you’d like to participate (firstname.lastname@example.org). Timms provides the canvases (23” by 20”) and easels; artists bring their own paints and donate their time, so bid generously (credit cards will be accepted).
“The paintings are going to be crazy,” Timms promises — at the last Cat Painting Takedown in 2013, cats took on the roles of president, astronaut, pirate and more. “Cats have a lot of personality and a lot of mystery, and people apply a lot of meaning to them.”
That event raised $2,800 and Timms hopes this one is even more successful, with proceeds going to benefit theBrooklyn Animal Rescue Coalition(where you can take adoptable pups for walks!) and an organization Timms is passionate about,Bushwick Street Cats.
“There’s all these feral cats in Bushwick right now and they’re doing a pretty good job locally neutering all these animals, which is badass because it keeps them on the streets doing what they’re supposed to be doing, which is killing rats,” he says. “Bushwick is pretty gross, so this army of cats is necessary.”
Cat Painting Takedown
Dec. 9, 8-10 p.m.
Better Than Jam Store & Studio, 20 Grattan St., Brooklyn