What is a Wolfbat

There once was a great wolf called Fenris. Fenris was one of three children fathered by the half giant half god Loki. Fenris’s brother was the Midgard Serpent who was banished to the sea and his sister was Hel who was cast to the underworld. The gods feared Fenris and thought that he had the potential to one day harm them. (But I have affection for wolves and have been obsessed with them since I was very little… so I was reading this Nordic tale in a different way than was intended) Because the gods were afraid of the wolf, they tricked him into being bound and then cast him to live beneath the earth. ( now this didn’t sit right with me because up until this point in the story Fenris was just hanging out being a wolf… strong and beautiful) During Ragnarok, which is the great battle between the gods and the giants, the battle that would destroy the world, Fenris breaks his bonds and hunts down Odin on the battlefield. He had grown so large by this point that his top jaw scraped the heavens and his bottom jaw racked the earth. Fenris found Odin and devoured him. (at this point of the story, the way I viewed it, Odin asked for that for treating Fenris so poorly) Then Odin’s son kills Fenris. (and I was pissed because why does the wolf have to die?) Anyways, I didn’t like that ending, so I rewrote it. You see, Fenris’s sister Hel was one of the only characters in Nordic mythology with the power of resurrection.  I wrote that Hel had retreated to the underworld when she saw how things were unfolding in the battle. When the flames had burned out and the battle was over, Hel found her brother’s mangled carcass on the battlefield. All that was intact was his head, so she resurrected him with bat wings so that he could fly the earth and destroy the gods.  A Wolfbat was born.

 

I have viewed the gods as “the man”, corporations, banks, etc… dictating a world to the giants, you, people, who are strong and beautiful in their own way, just trying to be themselves, and suppressed like Fenris by being bound to a 9-5, finance, rules and regulations, surveillance, etc… 

 

In 2006 I actually resurrected Fenris at the Deitch Art Parade in NYC. A Wolfbat was born. I viewed this new Giant more as a spirit that would wake people up, shake things up, allow you to participate…….  I paraded the 16 ft. Fenris down West Broadway with wings flapping, drums pounding, and jaws gnashing along with 20 or so friends dressed in Wolfbat masks, fur boots, and covered in sacrificial blood. This was a new tribe. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAM5i4F9fxA

 

I continue to use this tribe, the Wolfbat, and Parades/happenings, performances as a platform to set a stage of collaboration, story telling, comradery , and experience.

See what the Wolfbat tribe has been up to here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/WolfbatStudios/videos

http://www.flickr.com/photos/24246854@N00/sets/