It’s an odd sight at first: a strange-looking helmeted baby riding high on the back of a grinning, long-tailed lizard. But this bronze statue captures the adventuring spirit of “Snugglepot and Cuddlepie,” a beloved series by author/illustrator May Gibbs, inspired by her experiences in the bush of her Australian childhood home.
In Gibbs’ children’s books, written from 1918 onwards, Snugglepot and Cuddlepie are brothers, and just two of the adorable “Gumnuts,” wide-eyed, fairy-like, rosy-cheeked wee creatures who get into all sorts of trouble and live in the Australian bush. Their design was based on the look of young Eucalyptus tree nuts, with the female toddlers further adorned with flower hair, hats, and skirts.
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