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Columbus Makes Art Presents: The Amazing Cat Show

Angela Jann Angela Jann Columbus Makes Art Presents: The Amazing Cat ShowThe Amazing Cat Show will be on display starting Friday January 8 at 400 West Rich.
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Columbus Artists Exhibit 100s of Cat Paintings to Raise Money for Colony Cats (and Dogs)

Tona Pearson, co-founder of Franklinton Fridays and organizer of The Amazing Cat Show.

Tona Pearson, co-founder of Franklinton Fridays and co-organizer of The Amazing Cat Show.

Tona Pearson is the co-founder of Franklinton Fridays and an artist at 400 West Rich. She has partnered with 400 West Rich and Colony Cats to organize a large cat themed art exhibition in 400 West Rich to raise funds for Colony Cats. Pearson answers a few questions about the show:

Q: What gave you the idea for The Amazing Cat Show?
A: My family recently moved to Franklinton to be closer to 400, and the work we do down here. When we came to our house to unload all of our belongings, there were easily 7 to 10 feral cats in my yard alone, some of which were very sick. I thought that if we could come together as a community and put on a large scale event, that we could put our collective resources into something that could make an impact. Colony Cats was my first choice for the benefit since I know how actively they work to help feral kitties.

Q: What will be at the Amazing Cat Show?
A: There will be an amazing amount of cat art! Angela and I have collected nearly 200 pieces of art that span a huge field of different mediums. You will see everything from super high end, super kitschy, to super low brow art, all in the name of the kitties! There will be live music, a video show, food trucks, and most importantly, Colony Cats will have a booth set up with information, merchandise and adoptables.

Q: How many exhibitions have you organized or curated?
A: I am not exactly sure how many shows I have curated, or helped organize, but I would say that roughly 100 (give or take) in the last 6 years isn’t a stretch. Many years I just made work for myself. Six years ago I founded Art Party Columbus to help other beginning artists learn the tools to get their feet in the door, and hit the ground running. I moved to larger scale annual events, I help organize several local festivals Including the Columbus Arts Festival (as Big Local Arts), CrestFest, Blue Rock Arts Fest, and most recently got involved with Independents’ Day Festival. On top of those events, I co-founded Franklinton Fridays, with my good friend Walter Herrmann, which is a monthly community art event in Franklinton.


Q: What’s your arts background? How were you drawn to the arts?
A: When I was very little, my grandfather used to make floats for all of the local parades (and then make us ride them!), and I would help him construct and paint them. He still makes large cut-out art scenes to put in his yard to decorate for the holidays. We were always making art. I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t.

Q: What kind of art do you make?
A: My current focus is on watercolors, but I have enjoyed working in several mediums. I don’t think we should limit our creative outlets to just one thing.

The Amazing Cat Show at 400 West Rich Promenade Gallery opening reception is Friday, January 8 from 7pm-10pm. The gallery is on view every Saturday in January from 11am-3pm or by appointment. For more information, visit 400westrich.com.

Columbus Makes Art Presents is a bi-weekly column brought to you by the Greater Columbus Arts Council – supporting art and advancing culture in Columbus – in partnership with the Columbus Arts Marketing Association, a professional development and networking association of arts marketers. The column is a project of the Art Makes Columbus campaign, telling the inspiring stories of the people and organizations who create Columbus art. Each column will be written by a different local arts organization to give you an insiders look at how #artmakescbus.

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