Jack Kerouac with Cat, Lowell Massachusetts, Vintage Print by Vassilios Giavis

Regular price $45.00

I found this lithographic print of Jack Kerouac holding a cat at an estate sale in Lowell, MA, where Kerouac was born and raised. The piece is by Vassilios Giavis (b.1929)  a Lowell-based painter and illustrator, who, in addition to a wide variety of cityscapes, landscapes, etc., produced a series of paintings revolving around the life of Kerouac. Though neither dated nor numbered, I think this print, on heavy weight paper, was produced in the 1980s in a relatively small edition—the one other copy I found online came from the collection of the late James Perrizo, a Beat collector, scholar & one-time assistant to Kerouac’s former wife Edie Kerouac Parker.

The image is based on a well-known photograph of Kerouac, holding his favorite cat Tyke, a calico, whose death he wrote about in Big Sur: “Ordinarily the death of a cat means little to most men, a lot to fewer men, but to me, and that cat, it was exactly and no lie and sincerely like the death of my little brother — I loved Tyke with all my heart, he was my baby who as a kitten just slept in the palm of my hand with his little head hanging down, or just purring, for hours.” 

Pretty great I think, and definitely a piece of history! Paper size: 16”x23”; image size: 9 3/4”x17”. The image itself is in great condition, but would be best framed with a matte, as the top and bottom left corners of the sheet are slightly bent, and there is a bit of mildewing. Will be rolled and shipped in a tube.