Rat by Austyn Taylor is a charming addition to any shelfie. Rat calls back to our animist history where wandering spirits found refuge in masks and idols. Austyn's playful approach is revealed through the lens of sacred American cartoon tropes. Lucky us, animals that imagine being human.
2020 is the Year of the Rat, and a bit of history, the rat is the first ever of all zodiac animals. According to one myth, the Jade Emperor said the order would be decided by the order in which they arrived to his party. The Rat tricked the Ox into giving him a ride. Then, just as they arrived at the finish line, Rat jumped down and landed ahead of Ox, becoming first. The Rat is the yang to the yin and represents the beginning of a new day, seen as a sign of wealth and surplus and while rats are clever, quick thinkers, they are successful, but content with living a quiet and peaceful life.