Squid Kiss

Kaethe Kauffman, Squid Kiss, Ink, 2022, 33″x18″

I love cephalopods. One million years ago, Octopi and Homo sapiens shared an ancestor which bequeathed both species with similar eyes. The cephalopods are the most intelligent of the invertebrates. The largest eyeball on Earth, one very much like ours with a round pupil, belongs to the Giant Squid. When I gaze at a cephalopod, I see a clever glint in a human-like eye and I feel an emotional connection.

I imagine these brainy sea creatures might be able to feel fondness for one another. Suddenly, I find myself drawing them in a loving embrace. In each creature I create small undefined pinkish-red areas, that seem to be lit up with affection. A dark brown band at the border of their heads provides a communal space where, if they had lips, a kiss would press their skin together.

Textured ink lines indicate the charged atmosphere around them in the life-giving richness of the sea. The tactile surface of their bodies might be filled with thousands of tingles. Smaller warm lighted spots denote energetic sensations throughout their bodies. 

In this drawing, I try to express the full integrity of sentient beings living out their life cycle with joy.

Squid Kiss is featured in the Walter Wickiser Gallery space within the Seattle Art Fair, July 27-30, 2023 at the Lumen Field Event Center, 800 Occidental Avenue S, Seattle, Washington.