Inspiration for The Kraken

Note from Andrew: This is an excerpt from an article about inspiration for the River Monster project.    If this catches your interest, you can read the full story here: Legend of The Kraken ~ Enjoy!


In the Summer of 2011, a giant River Monster is visiting the American Midwest!

My name is Andrew Anderson and I grew up in a city along the banks of the Mississippi River.

As a ‘Creative’ living and working in the American Midwest, I wanted to tell the story of how my city of Muscatine, Iowa is the birthplace and home of incredibly innovative people and organizations.  It’s an especially inspiring story for artists and creative people.

So, how do you tell a story in a crazy and exciting way?  You make it crazy and exciting!

With inflatable sculptures inspired by Tony Sarge and the incredible tentacles made by Filthy Luker and Pedro Estrelles, a story born from historic documents and beautiful old photos of my city, and the boldness of knowing that Mark Twain once lived in my town, I set out to tell a monster of a legend!

I imagined a giant River Monster, whose visits forshadowed innovative changes in our city: First we were a lumber town, then the largest maker of Mother of Pearl Buttons(which Muscatine is still famous for).  From the success of the button industry, other innovative manufacturing, agriculture, and professional service giants grew and thrived.  And now today,  Muscatine is a city experiencing exciting creative renewal.

Each time the giant River Monster visits, it means a regeneration of the activities, interests,  and industries that make Muscatine a destination to live in.

And the legend continues!  The Monster is visiting again…

Launched in June 2011, the  River Monster project captured the imagination of our city: Walking down the street in downtown, I have often heard little children excitedly asking their parents, ‘Can we go see the River Monster?!’

Adults explain how the project renews their enthusiasm for their city.

And most importantly, it shines a spotlight on the artists and creative people who live here.  There are a growing number of intensely creative people here – making Muscatine an ever more interesting place to live.

Discover the Legend of the Kraken at:

Produced by Andrew K. Anderson, Jacob Lane, Ethan Anderson