"Rattenkonig"

Rattenkonig Found object 31" X 44" ink, and charcoal   

Rattenkonig

Found object 31" X 44"

ink, and charcoal 

 

The drawing assignment - create a drawing with the subject matter of a Rat King. If you do not know what rat king is I will just tell you it does not make for good dinner conversation. Please do not look it up until after you see my drawing and story. I am not joking do not look it up.  For me the challenge was how to make a drawing of a rat king palatable to look at. I was not sure why in the 1600s they called this freakish event rat king but to me it looked somewhat like a mythical crown for a mythical king. As a result my "Rattenkonig” requires a narrative and aa lot of abstract imagery.

Below is a brief summary of a narrative to explain the rat king phenomena and my drawing- 

The story of Rattenkonig is the story of a boy king. In fact his father the King mysteriously died when the evil queen noticed his mother Alina, the king's mistress was with child. When the King died the queen ordered Alina's head to be cut off. Alina was barely able to escaped into the black forest. She knew the queen would never stop looking for her so she had to hide in holes and caves places no one would ever dream of looking for a woman and a child. Alina gave birth in a hollowed out tree trunk inhabited by all kinds of gnarly creatures. She and the baby boy king spent their days in the under world of the forest  only to walk freely in the forest at night. The living conditions were safe from the queen but horrendous at first. The boy king was gentle and smart he was able to train the animals    of  the Black Forest to be  to loving and kind. They would protect the boy king  and his mother. Even the grimmest of creatures became sweet and loving and played with the boy. When the evil queen finally died the forest celebrated.   The forest animals wanted all to know the boy was the rightful king of the land and wanted him to have a crown.                                                                    The rats of the forest wove their tales into a rat knot to form a crown for  the boy.  And that  is why they call this phenomena the rat King. The young boy and his mother were able to return to the castle and lived happily ever after and the boy loved his crown and often went into the forest to be with nature.

I felt it was particularly suitable to make this piece on a found object.