In Alfred Kubin’s (1877–1959) India ink drawing The Pied Piper of Hamelin, the eponymous character is fervently blowing his instrument and enticing a group of naive-looking children to follow him. Only a solitary rat is fleeing from the pictorial space. In the background, a building with a pointed gable and a gateway provides a picturesque scenery. A stork is strutting over its roof. The Pied Piper is not marching in front of the children, however, but has turned to look at them and is bending forward slightly, his feet apart. He seems to be playing his tune to them while he is walking backwards – unaware that he is standing on the edge of a ditch-like abyss, into which dirt and mud are flowing from a drainpipe in the foreground. One more step and he will fall! A metaphor? Kubin narrated this exquisite scene in 1943 with nervous, dense pen strokes and a great passion for storytelling. After the National Socialists had seized power, his merciless oeuvre, which sometimes recalls aspects of psychoanalysis, was defamed as “degenerate art”.