This page is respectfully dedicated to:
Cartoonist, artist, poet, philosopher, public champion of gentleness, professional
whimsic (?), soul of Melbourne.
Here is just a small sample of Leunig's many creations.
[Cartoons deleted for copyright reasons. Beware all you intemperate
scanners out there...].
Leunig is blessed with a gift for poetry:
The People's Treasure.
They're privatising things we own together. They're flogging off
the people's common ground.
And though we're still connected by the weather They say that
sharing things is now unsound.
They're lonelifying all the public spaces. They're rationalising
swags and billabongs.
They're awfulising nature's lovely places, Dismantling the dreaming
and the songs.
Their macho fear of flabby soft sensations Makes them pine for
all things hard and lean.
They talk of foreign market penetrations And throbbing private
sectors. It's obscene.
They're basically unloving types of creatures With demons lurking
underneath their beds.
You'll notice that a necktie always features To keep their hearts
quite separate from their heads.
So if they steal away the people's treasure. And bring the jolly
swagman to his knees.
They can't remove the simple common pleasure Of loathing public
bastards such as these.
What Did We Get?,
What did you get on your christmas morn?
On the christmas morn when you were born.
Did you get some milk, did you get some pain,
Did you get some hurt that you can't explain?
Did you get a star from high above?
Did you get the gaze of a mother's love?
The spark that leaps from eye to eye
And twinkles 'til the day you die.
Oh what did we get on our christmas morn
On the christmas morn when we were born?
The poems above are from Michael Leunig, Everyday Devils and Angels
(Penguin Books, 1992).
Public Interventions (Rare but Profound).
(From "The Age" newspaper, Saturday 22/10/1994, p. 7. Background: The Liberal
State govt., upon attaining power, and winning the state the dubious honour
of hosting a large and noisy car race, decided to build a special track
for it in one of Melbourne's oldest parks, Albert Park, which is in a high-density
LEUNIG'S CAR PARK WITH A DIFFERENCE
Mr Curly, the character created by the Age cartoonist Michael Leunig,
has struck back at the Grand Prix. Instead of putting cars into parks and
gardens, Mr Curly has put a garden into a car. Speaking on behalf of Mr
Curly, Mr Leunig said yesterday that his creation prefers the hum of bees
to the hum of engines. The remodelled 1958 Austin Lancer, complete with
a lawn and a palm tree on the roof, is believed to be the first pollen-powered
[two delightful photos of a car bursting with foliage accompany the
The old wooden tram is a Melbourne icon, and Leunig painted one (all over)
before it became fashionable to do so. I would love a photo of this if
anyone has one....
AT LAST!! AT LAST!! (See below)
After almost 2 years of this page being a lone voice, I have been notified
by email that there has been a surprising sudden upsurge of Leunig representation
in cyberspace. These pages do the list-of-works and where-you-can-buy-thing
more thoroughly than mine, so I have removed my feeble efforts in that
direction. Here are the links:
STOP PRESS!! January 1999:
At last my dream (fondly-held but barely serious) of acquiring a photograph
of the legendary Melbourne tram over-run with whimsical beings of Mr Leunig's
creation has come true! The good fairy who appeared suddenly (over the
email) and granted my wish goes by the name of Sarah Churchman. She is
currently resident in London, but was a onetime visitor to Melbourne, at
which time she was struck by the beauty of this extraordinary yet unpretentious
member of the working tramways fleet of "The Met", and felt an urge to
capture it on film. Fortunately, unlike cartoons, "The Age" does not possess
copyright of photos of trams painted by Leunig. Here is a copy of the photo,
extra large so that any homesick Melburnians out there can almost imagine
stepping onto it and...: Would that ordinary Melburnians had felt
the same admiration for this singular vehicle of public transport as Sarah
did! The tram, being of the older wooden variety apparently disdained by
the contemporary commuter (the phrase "freezing blasts of cold air" tends
to appear in conversations on the subject), seems to have been retired
Where is it now??
Any information would be gratefully received by this
site , or by the Webmaster, "Curly Flat"
(to whom thanks are due for some "graphics massaging", to help bring viewers
of this site the above visual feast).
Last updated: 19 January, 1999.