Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Dick Bruna, the creator of iconic children's literary character Miffy, has died at the age of 89.
The official website for Miffy confirmed Bruna's death noting that he died Thursday in the Dutch city of Utrecht, his hometown.
An exact cause of death has not been disclosed.
Bruna's career as writer and illustrator for various characters spanned 124 picture books over 60 years. Miffy, created in 1955, has been published in more than 50 languages across 32 books that have sold over 85 million copies worldwide.
"The Miffy books depict the timeless, universal idylls of childhood – days at the seaside, trips to the zoo – making them accessible to any child no matter where they are in the world," noted the official Miffy website.
"Bruna's style of illustration – particularly Miffy's striking graphic, considered by many to be a design icon of the twentieth century – made him a household name in many parts of the globe," they continued about the creator's art style.
"He believed each illustration should stand alone as a piece of art, yet never lost the ability to see life through the eyes of a child. As a result, Bruna created a world of perfectly formed pictograms, instantly recognizable and adored by people of all ages."
Bruna is survived by his wife, three children and six grandchildren.
In an interview with The Telegraph in 2008, Bruna commented on how Japanese character Hello Kitty has been compared to Miffy noting, "I don't like that at all. I always think, 'No, don't do that. Try to make something that you think of yourself.'"