60 years of Miffy
November 12, 2014
On 21 June 2015 Miffy will be celebrating her 60th birthday. Miffy is the creation of the Utrecht illustrator, graphic designer and writer Dick Bruna (1927). Miffy is popular the world over, picture books about Miffy the rabbit are read in over 40 languages and to date over 85 million Miffy books have been sold. Miffy or Nijntje as she is known in Holland has also become a real design icon. To celebrate Miffy’s milestone birthday an exhibition will be held at Utrecht’s Centraal Museum. The exhibition is due to take place from 20th June to 20th September 2015 and will be entitled 60 Years of Miffy.
The largest part of the exhibition will be arranged for family visits and young children (2-6 years) all in all there will be 1000 m2 dedicated to educational fun. The exhibition will make children feel as if they have literally come to Miffy's home for a birthday party; of course, with Miffy's friends and family. They will be able to explore the cultural phenomenon "birthday celebration", as it happens in Holland, and several children's stories by Bruna will be told. Angles such as clothes, presents, paper chains and cakes will be thematically elaborated in challenging play and learning environments in which children, based on their own play and creativity, work on the basic principles of visual arts, theatre, music and dance.
The second part of the exhibition will focus on adult visitors; it is a retrospective of 60 years of Miffy, from 1955 till 2015. How did Miffy appear and how has she developed over the years? From a cultural and art historical perspective, mainly original designs, books, film and musical and merchandise through the decades will be exhibited, together with prizes and awards.
Since 2006, Miffy has her own accommodation opposite Centraal Museum. dick bruna house is where you will find the Bruna collection given by the creator to the Centraal museum for long-term use. (Bruna’s style always prescribes that dick bruna house is written in lover case). The collection consists of more than 7,000 works, including children's books, book covers and poster designs that Dick Bruna made for organizations such as Amnesty International and the Red Cross. From the summer of 2015, dick bruna house will be under renovation. During this time 60 years of Miffy can be seen at Utrecht’s Centraal Museum. It is expected that dick bruna house will re-open in late 2015.
In Utrecht you can also find Miffy in other parts of the city. The little white rabbit has a square dedicated to her which is called Nijntje Pleintje. Here you can find a Miffy and it is located at the beginning of the Van Asch van Wijckskade, just outside the city centre. The statue was created by Dick Bruna’s son, Marc Bruna, and is as perfect in all its simplicity as the Miffy drawings. There are also Miffy traffic lights in Utrecht. The lights on the Lange Vliestraat have real ‘Miffies’ to show when you can cross the street. If you are looking for the perfect Miffy souvenir to take home you can find plenty of Miffy merchandise on sale in the Toerisme Utrecht bureau located in the Dom Square.