Off Limits - Bobcat
For one reason or another, bobcats and lynxes were, even in my childhood, very attractive creatures to me. They still are. These animals are very tied to the history of Western, wild America, with the trappers and the fur trade. How many times my father read for me the books of Jack London in which cats, wolves, bears and beavers played such a big role. The way people had to survive in the wilderness, with the extremely severe climate situation, has always fascinated me. Of the two American lynx species, the bobcat to me is the most attractive, probably because of its resemblance to our house cats. Named for their distinctive bobbed tails, bobcats are natural born survivors who will eat a variety of prey, depending on region, season and availability. More opportunistic that picky, bobcats will consume eggs, carrion, birds, frogs, rodents, rabbits, reptiles, bats and just about anything else that they can catch. The very American cat needed something really American to complete the scene. The colors of the monarch butterfly suit the grayish fur of the bobcat so well, it seemed that the cat’s colors were begging for something orange. The monarch’s nature history fitted exactly in the idea for my painting: an inedible prey. Each fall, migrating monarch butterflies, like the two in my painting, return to Mexico for the winter. There they are welcomed as spirits of the departed during Los Dias de Los Muertos (the Day of the Dead), celebrated between Halloween and All Souls Day. The ancient Aztecs believed that monarch butterflies were the spirits of their departed warriors who remained on earth, still wearing the colors of battle. Fragile and defenseless, the monarch’s brightly colored wings are nature’s way of advertising an “off limits” warning to hungry, would-be predators: Monarch butterflies are toxic if consumed. Despite being intrigued, this bobcat instinctively knows that if he eats them, these butterflies would cause him to become violently ill. So, just like Aztec warriors, these butterflies are fearless as they parade perilously close to the bobcat’s paws.
|Edition||LIMITED EDITION PRINT|
|Limited Edition of||950|
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