Michael Leunig Interview

The quirky Australian cartoonist Michael Leunig was recently interviewed on Andrew Denton’s Enough Rope program.

He’s famous for cute little people with big noses, ducks, teapots, and for creating the odd controversy or two. His poetic little cartoons have provoked enough people to receive a steady stream of hate-mail and death threats.

Michael Leunig interview

Here’s some Leunig quotes from the interview (see his article about the interview at the bottom of this post too).

  • I’d worked in factories and things, and I thought, I must find something to do. So it’s a bit like becoming a musician. You sort of get a gig, you know, you draw and someone likes that drawing, and someone asks you to do another one. So I get to this newspaper and then I’m asked to be a cartoonist, to comment on the world of politics which I didn’t know a great deal about. I was very green.
  • It’s like a little stage. I thought it’s a little stage and I can put little actors on it and things and why should I restrict this to these boring politicians? Why can’t I put pixies and fairies and ducks and all those embarrassing things, the things that are deeply embarrassing to the grown-up, intelligent adults.
  • I just like to draw the duck, you see, and it seems to represent something. It brings out what’s in you, you know, your inner duck is awakened obviously for you, me, everyone. But there are some who have no inner duck, it appears, and they get very threatened by such an innocent creature.

See the full Enough Rope interview here. Leunig also talks about doing the interview..
“I learn that Andrew likes to “reveal the person behind the public mask. A minor worry is forming. What if he tries to tear my mask off and pulls my head off by mistake?” The Age

About Dion

Australian artist and observer of things.. all kinds of things. I like a wide variety of art, from the weird and wonderful to the bold and beautiful.. and everything in between.


  1. Anonymous says:

    I love Leunig. His cuteness can be missleading as there is often a powerful, sociological message behind his little Curly figures.

    He is an artist in touch with his feelings, and one that has his finger on the pulse of contemporary society.

  2. Good for you for making it into The Artist’s blurb on blogs this month.

  3. What is the Artist’s blurb on blogs Cricket?

  4. In case anyone is interested the photo is of a print called ‘Playful Creature’ :)

    I have to admit I came across this post while ego surfing! I’ve just finished redeveloping the website for the publisher/gallery of the Leunig print.

    If you want to find out more about the artwork you can see details about it here
    - Playful Creature webpage

    Chrysalis Publishing has well over 120 artworks by Michael Leunig as well as his bio –
    Artwork by Michael Leunig

    I hope this isn’t spam, I figure the website might be of interest to readers of this post, but don’t hesitate to remove the links if you find them offensive!



  5. Yeah, links in comments usually means spam, but there are exceptions Tom.

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