Once I was a child, sometimes I was a rabbit

Portraits of the artist as a young rabbitLast autumn the Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair (CCBF) invited me to make some pictures for the Chen Bochui Illustration exhibition. The theme of the exhibition was ‘Once I was a child’ and being short of time I decided to interpret this very simply. I did some doodling about my own childhood and the thing that kept coming up was RABBITS: toy rabbits, real rabbits, rabbits in books, drawing rabbits,being a rabbit, eating rabbit food… I really did like rabbits.

This screenprint shows the best of my several rabbit costumes, which was a turquoise towelling hoodie with foam ears sewn on by my mum. It felt quite strange and self-indulgent to make a character so directly based on myself.

I also made a print about playing rabbit football with my brother (no actual rabbits harmed – or involved – in the playing of this game) and the two were shown during the fair in November alongside work by over fifty illustrators from 13 countries – so it was lovely to hear my pictures had been given second prize!

All the pictures are now part of the collection of the Baoshan International Folk Art Museum: their website shows all the winning artwork and some information on the exhibition.

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