Bunny Goes To Bitburg
Michael Huppatz returns for his second exhibition at Lee and Me following his highly successful show last year. He has exhibited in Adelaide, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Wollongong, London and regional galleries. Here we ask him a few questions.
Tell us about your art.
This exhibition, like the previous one at Lee and Me, features my signature ‘bunny character’. This time I have him interacting with classic (and some more obscure) cartoon figures from the 1930s to the 1970s. There are a handful of other works in the show too, but most of them are the ‘toons. I guess I’m spending a lot of time with my son and reconnecting with the hours of lost time I spent as a kid watching Saturday morning cartoons. The original paintings and drawings will be for sale during the exhibition, as well as limited edition fine-art prints.
Still doing the bunnies then?
Yeah, I can’t seem to shake the bunny. It’s a character I’ve really taken to. I love the way it can be a carefree, playful figure, capturing the pure joy of childhood. But because it’s a man in an animal suit with his face hidden, it can seem slightly sinister too. Also, from a totally art driven perspective, all the folds of the costume make it a much more interesting subject to draw or paint. In fact, I am best known for my paintings, but since starting on this bunny character, I have rediscovered how much I love drawing.
Where did the bunny idea come from?
I was away on a holiday and took a quick photo of a guy in a bunny suit carrying an advertising sandwich board. I thought nothing of it at the time, but a couple of years later, found that all my art pieces since then seemed to have this character creeping into them. So, once I realised this, I thought I should do him justice and did a series of paintings concentrating on the bunny. This year I returned to New York, where the original photo was taken, and I’m looking forward to doing a series of New York works, putting the bunny back into his ‘native habitat’.
‘Bunny Goes To Bitburg’ is showing through November and December. Make sure you drop by for that Christmas present with a difference.