Kiki Smith deals with issues of identity, fantasy, and the human body in her work. In her animal studies, she explores the similarities between humans and animals through detailed depictions of hair and fur, feathers and skin. In "Litter," a mother cat is nursing a litter of four white kittens, which are nearly obscured by her fur as viewed from above. The mother cat's eyes and nose, two of her paws, and a nipple are highlighted with hand-applied platinum leaf. Here, the artist is celebrating life and the feminine ability to create and nurture offspring.
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