Ben HaywardSeptember 25th
2019

Introducing the world’s latest artistic sensation, out very own little Ratisse, Darius the rat. 

This weekend just gone, a photo series of Darius and some tiny watercolour paintings which he did himself, have sent the internet into collective meltdown.  

It’s shocking when you realise a rodent has more artistic spark than you, which could be one of the reasons why the series of pictures have made such an impact - or it could just be that he’s so incredibly cute, and looks so proud of his work!

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Darius belongs to Amalie Markota Andersen, an animation and digital arts student from Askim, Norway, who shared the photos of her little buddy’s handiwork on Tumbler.  

Amalie says that Darius made his first painting back in January 2018, after she got a watercolour set.

She said: “When I had Darius, I got a non-toxic watercolour set, dipped his lil hands and feet in it and just let him walk back and forth on the paper until it started to look like something," 

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Amalie reckons each of Darius’ masterpieces took him roughly ten minutes to paint and that she really wasn’t expecting the amount of attention the posts received. 

"Darius going viral was very exciting, I was so happy people liked him,” she said. “It’s what he deserved!”

And it seems like what started out as a hobby actually became a nice little earner for the pair. Since his original rise to fame, Amalie ‘commissioned’ another three or four Darius originals - and used the money they sold for to buy Darius a harness so he could safely explore the outdoors.

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However, there is a sad twist to this tale. Darius passed away earlier this year, but Amalie said their time together was extremely impactful for her.

She adopted Darius back in 2017 and didn’t really know how old he was, describing him as ‘timid and shy’ and cuddly ‘like a little baby’ despite what she now realises was his old age.

Speaking to Insider, Amalie said: “I do regret selling the original a little bit, but it also makes me very happy thinking that his works are out there somewhere, hopefully still intact and well!”

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"I had him in a weird time of my life where I was trying to figure out who I was as a person, and also where I should be going in life. He was my light in the darkness, if you will.”

"And I'll be forever infinitely thankful for him, even if he never knew what kind of impact he had. Not only on me but the thousands of people who fell in love with him and his little painting.

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