Jeff de Boer’s work being considered for Tower of London Armouries collection
By The Calgary Eyeopener, CBC News Posted: Dec 14, 2015 5:52 PM MT Last Updated: Dec 14, 2015 5:52 PM MT
This year, the Calgary artist celebrates three decades of crafting armour for cats and mice from steel, silver, brass, bronze, nickel, copper, leather, fibre and wood.
‘In base of those cat pieces there’s actually an urn for their ashes.’– Jeff de Boer
From medieval mice to Elven cat princesses adorned in gemstones — de Boer has sold hundreds of pieces of his animalia armour to collectors and pet owners around the world.
“They’re actually turning into a form of portrait. So when the cat passes away, even in the base of those cat pieces there’s actually an urn for their ashes,” he said.
But de Boer’s quirky art form is rooted in the mighty mouse.
It all started when he was studying jewellery design at the Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD).
“I thought about building a suit that was very small but I didn’t want to do a model. So I thought, ‘What would make it authentic?’ And realized, I could actually make a suit of armour for a mouse.”