Our Charity

Art in Healthcare is the leading arts provider for health organisations in Scotland. We lend high quality, original artwork to hospitals and other healthcare settings and provide fun-filled art workshops and talks for patients, care home residents and sheltered housing communities.
Find out more about our work at Art in Healthcare.
Donate with JustGiving

Artworks in Collection


2505


Helpful Links

Maggies Edinburgh

Macmillan Information and Support Centre


Total Pageviews

372

Fox, Cat and His Friends

by

Michael Forbes

FoxCatandHisFriends
Fox, Cat and His Friends by Michael Forbes
Oil on canvas
1996

Reg. Number: P750

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This artwork is an illustration from a children's story which Forbes wrote about a little mouse and his fat cat friend. 'Fox, Cat and His Friends' is a surreal, dream-like image that seems to have emerged fully-formed from the artist's subconscious. Referring to the painting, Michael wrote that the little mouse and his cat friend "want to get to the moon because the mouse believes it is made of cheese... the Cat gets all his farmyard friends to stand on top of each other with the little mouse at the top so he can reach the moon. Although the Cat has a lot of friends unfortunately he does not have enough to reach the moon."

The surrealist, whimsical nature of the subject matter is enhanced by the semi-realistic, matter-of-fact way in which the animal characters are painted. This technique is common in surrealist works, with a realistic painting style utilized to depict fantastical scenes in order to heighten the impact of the painting and further magnify the mystery and uncanny effect of the image. Here, the oil paint is applied smoothly onto the canvas, while the backdrop has a distinctive, recognisably Scottish look and feel. There are plenty of whimsical details; in particular, the stacked animals in the foreground and the mournful face of the pale moon. Looking at the painting is much like entering a youthful dream, full of the mysterious symbolism of childhood and fairy tales. For a moment the painting draws us back into a child-like state of wonder and bemusement, its visual language that of a hidden, dreaming subconscious luring us away from the troubles and problems of reality.

Michael Forbes lives in the Scottish Highlands and has received praise and admiration from such well-known figures as actor Ricky Gervais, critic and cultural commentator George Melly, and director and former Python, Terry Gilliam. His self-taught style has developed from the dark surrealism of his earlier paintings to the 'pop surrealism' of his current works. He has painted numerous celebrities - including Gervais - and recently completed a painting depicting American President Barack Obama.

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Since 1991 our charity has been assembling one of the largest and most prestigious Collections of original Scottish art in the country. These artworks are uniquely available for display in hospitals and other healthcare settings.


Art in Healthcare is truly committed to the important role that art plays in the healing environment but we need your help to properly maintain and build this unique Collection for the enjoyment and benefit of the hundreds of thousands of staff, patients and visitors who view it each year.


With your help we're able to:


Keep our Collection on display in hospitals and care homes
Support young artists at their degree shows
Buy artwork from professional artists
Provide fun-filled art workshops for patients and care home residents
Develop our training programmes for volunteers


Adopt an artwork from our Collection for just £3 a month and you'll receive:


Your name (or a loved one's) written next to your chosen artwork online
A certificate of adoption with a picture of the artwork
Invites to Art in Healthcare's special events
First to view our latest Prestigious Print
Our colourful e-newsletter


"My patients really enjoy looking at our collection. Sometimes they even do an 'art tour' around the premises." ~ Barron Dental Practice


You can adopt an artwork in the gallery, if it hasn't already been adopted, by clicking the 'Adopt Me' button below the picture of the artwork.


Our Charity

Art in Healthcare is the leading arts provider for health organisations in Scotland. We lend high quality, original artwork to hospitals and other healthcare settings and provide fun-filled art workshops and talks for patients, care home residents and sheltered housing communities.
Find out more about our work at Art in Healthcare.
Adopt an artwork
Donate with JustGiving

Helpful Links

Maggies Edinburgh

Macmillan Information and Support Centre


Total Pageviews

372


Supported by Edinburgh Art Fair