Two internationally acclaimed creators have coupled their dazzling imaginative powers to capture the wonder of childhood in this homage to the magic of a garden.
Like the garden it portrays, Outside is a Baroque wonderland waiting to be explored, a shimmery place of texture, luminosity and colour where time stands still and memories are born.
Libby Hathorn is an award winning poet and author of more than fifty books for children and young people, as well as books for adults. Translated into several languages and adapted for stage and screen, her work has won honours in Australia, United States, Great Britain and Holland.
She was a National Ambassador for the National Year of Reading in Australia in 2012, and is an Australia Day Ambassador each year, visiting country towns to discuss literature, especially poetry, and give workshops to interested writers.
Ritva Voutila was born in Nokia, Finland.
After finishing high school in Nokia she moved to Helsinki to study art at the School of Art and Design. In 1968 she moved to Australia, and then to Spain in 1971, where she continued perfecting her drawing and painting skills for the next ten years while working in fields as varied as garden design and computer programming and analysis. In 1981 she moved back to Australia, settling down in Sydney.
For the next couple of years she worked as a computer sales representative, but in 1983 she became a full time freelance artist working initially in jewellery design, graphic design and advertising.
In Sydney, she studied art at Paddington Art School and the Julian Ashton School of Arts. She also holds a BA in Philosophy from Macquarie University, Sydney, and studied Urban Design at Sydney University. She has a special interest in Philosophy for Children.
Ritva is also an accomplished school performer and holds frequent art workshops. Since 1995 she has toured her school programmes throughout Australia to annual audiences of over 20,000 students.
Twice (1999 and 2005) her show has won a Frater Award for Excellence in School performances from the NSW State Department of Education and Training.
She lives in Ballarat, 100 km north-west of Melbourne, with her husband Richard.