A note about The Cuddlywumps Chronicles

This blog is written and maintained by Miss Cuddlywumps, a fluffy-tailed calico cat who is both classically educated and familiar with mysteries. She receives creative input from the Real Cats and clerical assistance from She of Little Talent (old SoLT, a.k.a. Roby Sweet). Comments or complaints should be addressed to Miss C rather than to old SoLt (Ms. Sweet). Ms. Sweet accepts no responsibility for Miss C's opinions.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Explore Cats at the Archives of American Art

Remember life before the internet? Back in the day when, if you wanted to show your friend on the other side of the country some silly thing your cat liked to do, you couldn’t just shoot off an email with a link. Oh no. You had to draw. A picture. On a piece of paper. And send it. In the mail. With a stamp. Remember that?

The Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art remembers, and that’s why “Cat Correspondence” is one section of the exhibition titled Before Internet Cats: Feline Finds from the Archives of American Art. The exhibition is on view at the Lawrence A. Fleischman Gallery in Washington, DC, but you can explore the items from the comfort of your own computer. We picked out just a few of our favorites to share with you here.

First up is an ink drawing of a cat and three mice, by Charles Green Shaw (1892-1974). Find this and other sketches in "Cats and the Creative Process."

Here is a photograph of Tuffy the cat, from the papers of abstract expressionist painter Hans Hofmann (1880-1966). Photographer and date unknown. Find this and other photographs, and even a 1958 Cat Fancier's Association registration form, in "Everyday Life."

And last, wouldn't you love to get this in the mail? It's a piece of "mail art" sent by influential fiber artist Lenore Tawney (1907-2007) in 1980. Find it and some other neat pieces in "Cat Correspondence."


  • Before Internet Cats runs through October 29, 2017.
  • The Fleischman Gallery is located in the Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture, 8th and F Streets, NW, Washington, DC.
  • Hours are 11:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. daily.
  • Admission is free.


  1. That would be a neat exhibit to visit. I enjoyed the pieces you shared.

  2. Don't you love that cats are so popular they're the star of their own exhibits?

  3. That looks like a great exhibit. You always find such interesting information.