"Gilgamesh," mixed media rust print on vintage linen, Brian Fisher

The Epic of Gilgamesh, regarded as the earliest surviving great work of literature,  is an ancient Sumerian poem describing the life and ambitions of Gilgamesh the demigod, hero and king of the Sumerian city-state of Uruk.

The story first describes Gilgamesh as larger than life, beautiful to behold, with an expansive imagination and passions.  He’s the epitome of the civilized man.  He’s a builder, a dreamer but as it turns out, he’s also a despot.

His abused and oppressed subjects pray to the gods for deliverance.  The gods respond by creating an opposite, a match, for Gilgamesh.  His name is Enkidu. He’s a natural, a wild man who's friends are the beasts of the wild.  They brawl when they meet but learn quickly to respect each other. It’s a twenty-seventh century B.C.E. bromance.

With Enkidu’s tempering influence the great city of Uruk is finally ruled by a just and wise King.  Gilgamesh however is not content. His burning ambition for fame and immortality lead him and Enkidu to another adventure.

I’m leaving the story of Gilgamesh here for now.  I’ll write more as I share the Gilgamesh related images I am working on that depict this earliest recorded Hero’s Journey.

Check out my mixed media rust monotype print “Gilgamesh” during the VIVA, 2018 Holiday Vashon Island Art Studio Tour, December 1-2 & 8-9. 10-4pm!


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