Lion king

Oil on canvas, 2013
40x60 cm

Nowadays lions are seen mostly as symbols of nobility, in part because of Christian symbolism and part because of cartoons, but in older popular tales they were often symbols of sheer arrogance. Not because people hated lions (most people from ancient Europe would never see one in their entire life) but rather because that's how the common people who passed down fables perceived power: most kings and powerful people were selfish tyrants in their eyes, so the "king of animals" obviously had to be like that too. I wanted to convey that flavour. Think of fables like "The lion's share" - this is one king you don't want to displease.