The King is Dead
Pencil on 180 gsm cartridge paper
Size 21 x 29cm
As an artist, I have always been fascinated by the idea of power and how it can be alluring and corruptive. In this work, I explore this concept through a skull that wears the crown of a once-powerful king.
The skull is a potent symbol of mortality and serves as a reminder that power is fleeting and temporary. Conversely, the crown represents the pinnacle of human achievement and the desire to rule over others.
Together, they create a powerful image that speaks to the hubris and downfall of those who seek to wield absolute power. By juxtaposing the two symbols, I seek to convey a sense of irony, and tragedy and a warning against the dangers of unchecked ambition.
Moreover, by using the skull and the crown, I hope to emphasise the universality of this theme. The allure of power is not limited to any particular culture or time period; it is a fundamental aspect of human nature that has been present throughout history.
In creating this piece, I drew inspiration from the classical tradition of vanitas paintings, which often feature skulls and other symbols of mortality. However, I also sought to update this tradition by incorporating contemporary elements, such as the crown and the idea of power.
Overall, my intention with this work is to invite viewers to reflect on the nature of power, its fleeting nature, and the ultimate price that those who seek it may pay.