Reflecting on a year of change and embracing a slower pace, with Oliver Jeffers

This week's guest is the visual artist and author, Oliver Jeffers, who makes art and tells stories … That's fine art for adults, mostly, and award-winning picture books for children, too.

Working across painting, bookmaking, illustration, collage, performance, and sculpture, Oliver offers a little curiosity and humour throughout his practice, exploring how the human mind understands the world. His work reminds us to smile even when facing darker times. His picture books have been translated into over fifty languages and sold over 14 million copies worldwide. And his artworks have been exhibited worldwide, including the Brooklyn Museum in New York, the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin, the National Portrait Gallery in London.

Oliver grew up in Belfast, where he's currently based with his family, but he also has a home and studio in Brooklyn, New York. Just before the global pandemic, he and his wife and two children began a year-long travelling adventure, but all that was put on hold last February. Here, we chat about how the events of last year affected Oliver. We also talk about how his practice has developed over the years, where he gets his ideas from, and what he has in store next. We discover, too, the sense of optimism and hope Oliver has for the future and why we all could benefit from slowing down.

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