2013, acrylic and white ink on cartridge paper
'Ludwig's Swan' is the first painting in series inspired by the Swan King; the fairy-tale King of Bavaria, Ludwig II. Greatly influenced by old Bavarian folk stories, including Lohengrin, and growing up in a castle with these tales depicted on murals covering the walls of course the young King's mind was full of magic and dreams. One of his favourite birds which features through his most iconic castle 'Neuschwanstein' (meaning new swan stone) is the swan. The Swan is Ludwig's ultimate totemic symbol.
Ludwig's Swan is my homage to the dream king and is shrouded with symbolism relating to Ludwig II. From the Jasmine flowers strewn in the lake (a favourite flower of his dear cousin Sisi - the Empress of Austria) to the weeping willow (acting as curtain, shielding the swan from reality - of which Ludwig hated) and the full moon glowing in the sky (Ludwig was also known as the Moon King due to his nocturnal lifestyle).
On an almost pilgrimage like trip to Bavaria in the Summer of 2015 I visited the Wittelsbach Crypt at the base of St. Michaels Kirche in Munich. Here the elaborate tomb of Ludwig II lies with various memento's hanging from the railings protecting it. Hopefully the postcard I left of this very picture still remains weaved through the grating.