Peter Suart

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 22 March, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 22 March, 2007, 12:00am

Agnes b. Cinema, Sunday

There are many sides to Peter Suart. He's a musician, theatrical performer, illustrator, teacher, writer and more. But during the past few years the Hong Kong-bred British artist has focused on writing and illustrating. He recently returned to Hong Kong to launch his latest book and an exhibition of 57 of its drawings.

The comic book, The Black Book of Falling, is an extension of a cartoon series called The Hoop of Hope serialised in Artslink, the Hong Kong Arts Centre's now defunct monthly newsletter.

This is Suart's eighth book featuring the characters Tik and Tok, an owner and his dog whose relationship is reminiscent of those of Charlie Brown and Snoopy and Tintin and Snowy. However, it's the first time he has experimented with black and white drawings.

The story begins as the pair find their way out of a black hole into a world where they meet strange people and get into difficult situations. Suart says the book is both funny and serious, presenting philosophy in a light-hearted manner.

'It's about coming to a blissful realisation that you are the universe, and therefore you don't have to fear dying, for example. It's extremely self-empowering.'

Suart admits that Tik is sometimes something of an alter ego. 'But I didn't create the character to represent me.'

Reading and cinema are his major sources of inspiration. His favourite authors include Joseph Campbell and Ken Wilber, his favourite film directors are Andrei Tarkovsky and Ingmar Bergman, and his favourite cartoonists are Bill Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes) and Herge (Tintin).

Peter Suart talks about illustration, and strip cartoons, Mar 25, 3pm-4.30pm, Agnes b. Cinema, HK$50; reunites with Kung Chi-shing and Paul Meredith in a concert, An Evening of Little Songs, Mar 29, 8pm, Fringe Theatre, Fringe Club. HK$50-HK$60