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Inflatable friend … "People are amazed when they look in the window and see Cosmo" Photo: Vanessa Levis
Clinton Bradley shares his modest bedsit in Sydney's Darlinghurst with an unorthodox flatmate: Cosmo, a giant inflatable rabbit by New Zealand artist Michael Parekowhai. "I went into a gallery wanting to buy one of Michael's photographs but when I saw Cosmo, I knew I had to have him," says Bradley.
Bradley, who works in IT, is an avid collector of modern art. His light-filled apartment is a magical space, brimming with art books and things to fire the imagination. Almost as impressive as Cosmo is a giant gothic cut-paper tower by Peter Madden. There are witty chairs by the Campana brothers, wall art made from drinking straws and even a tyre that spins on a motorised pedestal.
"I've loved contemporary art ever since I was a kid," says Bradley. "I generally have my next three purchases planned out. Everything is prioritised around the art. It drives my parents and friends crazy."
He insists that having to negotiate a place to sit between Cosmo and the front door is no obstacle to entertaining. "You'd be surprised. I normally have people over for Sunday brekkie. The most I can have is four or five; people either find a chair or they lounge on the bed. Most people who come here comment on the fact that there's no TV. I spend a lot of time looking at and enjoying the art."
As for Cosmo, he gets sent to bed each night as his electric pump is too noisy when Bradley is sleeping. Flick the switch and he deflates into a puddle of fabric and whiskers, ready to rise and shine come morning.
Photography: Vanessa Levis
From Sunday Life