The giant glowing rabbits traveling the world with an environmental message are hopping off at Brookfield Place for a couple weeks — and it seems they've been busy.
The five original inflatable sculptures, created by Australian artist Amanda Parer and known collectively as “Intrude,” will be joined at 230 Vesey St. on April 17 by two more rabbits commissioned by Arts Brookfield. The nylon bunnies range from two to four stories tall; one will actually sit inside Brookfield's Winter Garden atrium, while the others frolick in the outdoor area bordering the Hudson River.
Though they appear whimsical and sweet, Parer's bunnies also have a deeper message. Most of us know rabbits as the Easter Bunny or the tardy White Rabbit of “Alice in Wonderland.” But in Australia, they’re an invasive species brought over by settlers in the 1700s that are now devastating its environment.
“They represent the fairytale animals from our childhood – a furry innocence, frolicking through idyllic fields,” writes the artist, who used Pozible to crowdfund the project in 2014. “‘Intrude’ deliberately evokes this cutesy image, and a strong visual humour, to lure you into the artwork only to reveal the more serious environmental messages in the work. They are huge, the size referencing ‘the elephant in the room,’ the problem, like our environmental impact, big but easily ignored.”
Watch the magic happen as the rabbits are inflated on Sunday, April 17, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. They’ll remain on display through April 30.