The White Rabbit is the first character that Alice encounters. He scurries past her as she sits on the bank of a river with her sister, whiling away a summer afternoon in the English countryside. As the rabbit goes past, to her astonishment, Alice hears him mutter “Oh Dear! Oh Dear! I shall be too late!”, before taking out a pocket watch to check the time.
When the White Rabbit disappears into a rabbit hole, Alice instinctively follows him, “never once in the world considering how she would get out again.” And so, her adventures begin.
This painting – the first of nine depicting each one of Bermuda’s parishes – situates the White Rabbit in St George’s, Bermuda’s original capital and the first part of the island to be settled. Bermuda’s largest fort – Fort St Catherine, built in 1614 – can be seen in the distance. The rabbit welcomes us to the exhibition beneath a Bermuda Moongate, stepping through which is believed to bring good luck.