The American Dream: CAT’s Manifesto for Freedom

This series is an ode to the American Dream, a powerful collection of works that aims to reignite the spirit and aspirations that define this great nation. It is a journey through words and ideas, a celebration of the potential that lies within us all, and a reminder of the enduring promise of America.

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Contemporary artist CAT, whose real name is Dao Anh Tho, has unveiled her latest collection, America Now, to the public. The exhibition features an impressive display of 22 ballpoint pen paintings and a monumental lacquer work measuring 3.6m by 4.8m and weighing a staggering 250kg, titled Who Got Louder Speaker?



Sketches by CAT using a paintball pen. Photo: Ngo Minh/The Hanoi Times

This particular painting was created in the Bushwick immigrant area of New York, amidst a vibrant music festival with speakers blaring from all directions, day and night.

The *America Now* series was initiated in May 2023, upon CAT’s return to the US after an 11-year hiatus. Having studied abroad in the US for nearly five years, CAT holds a deep affinity for the country, admiring its values of freedom, equality, and opportunity. The recent changes in America have had a profound impact on CAT, inspiring her to create art that embodies a sense of liberty, generosity, excitement, and vibrancy.

CAT has long aspired to create large-scale lacquer pieces, providing her with a vast canvas to fully express her creativity and artistic vision. Working on such a grand scale demands unique approaches and techniques, presenting a challenging yet exhilarating endeavor for the artist.



CAT stands beside her massive 250kg painting, *Who Got Louder Speaker?* Photo: Le Lai/The Hanoi Times

In the *America Now* series, CAT draws influence from the renowned American abstract artist Jackson Pollock. Her free-flowing, musical approach to pouring paint onto the canvas results in a powerful expression of freedom and movement.

“This large-scale painting took me over three months to complete,” CAT shared. “It marks the first step in my America Now dream, which encompasses 22 large-scale works and a distinctive architectural and sculpture art space to showcase and preserve these creations.”

Additionally, CAT inaugurated the MetaReverse Art Gallery, located at D1-24 Dao Hinh Street, Long Bien District, Hanoi. The *America Now* exhibition will be on display until June 21 at this innovative gallery space.

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