Who is he? When creating the character “Roger The Rat”, Roger Ballen asked himself this very question. By exploring the subconscious – both his and ours – the artist brought to life the half-human, half-rat figure applying his distinctive Ballenesque-style.
As one of the most influential photographers of our time, Roger Ballen became known for visualizing the frighteningly seductive essence of the human condition. His works confront the viewer and challenge them to come with him on a journey into their own minds as he explores the deeper recesses of his own. Ballen follows and intensifies this approach with his “Roger The Rat” series, which as a whole reflects of that human instinctual type of behavior that people can't act on, and might act out in their own minds, but not reveal what they're really thinking or feeling.
As a human-id, Roger the rat does things that you're not supposed to do, engaging in ‘devious’ acts, abandoning morality in favour of living a life that is freed from societal constructs, treating women and children with equal disregard, acting upon animal instincts and the subconscious mind. “He does things that a lot of people would like to do, he acts out his subconscious emotions. That's what he is. Sometimes when you do that - you might be seen as absurd or insane or it might be seen as unsociable, it might even be seen as criminal - but this brings up all sorts of issues to try to define what these terms really mean in a so-called normal society”, the artist himself explains the eponymous Roger, which he also sees as an extension of his mind. Roger, the human-id character is an alter-ego of the artist’s mind and with his traits as well as his behavior slips into the mind of the beholder, therefore becomes an alter ego of their minds.
Produced between 2015 and 2020, “Roger The Rat” series consists of sixty photographs and a film. In 2020, “Roger The Rat”-book was published by Hatje Cantz, featuring the photography work in classic Ballenesque-style, normalizing what is referred to as “dark” turning it into a “normal world”. Today, photographs and short videos taken on set during filming are now available as art NFT’s.
The exclusive selection of art NFTs have never been released before and come as a limited edition! The collection is being dropped on misa.art soon! Find more info HERE!