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The Original Art 2017 Exhibit

The Museum of Illustration at the Society of Illustrators is proud to present The Original Art, an annual exhibit celebrating the fine art of children’s book illustration, on display from November 1 through December 30, 2017. The French authors Rémi Courgeon (Feather), Christine Davenier (Emma's Circus), Béatrice Alemagna (On A Magical Do-Nothing Day), Isabelle Simler (The Blue Hour), Serge Bloch (George and His Shadow and  In the Beginning: Illustrated Stories from the Old Testament), Benjamin Chaud (A Funny Thing Happened at the Museum...), Kerascoët (Malala's Magic Pencil) shine a spotlight.

Founded in 1980 by illustrators’ agent and art director Dilys Evans, this exhibit showcases the original art from the year’s best children’s books. The 2017 exhibit features a diverse list of books selected by a jury of outstanding illustrators, art directors, and editors. Gold and Silver Medals honoring tops books and artists are determined by the jurors through a discussion and final vote.

This year's Silver Medal winners are Gilbert Ford for Soldier Song: A True Story of the Civil War (Disney Publishing Worldwide/ Disney Hyperion) and Rafael López for Bravo! Poems About Amazing Hispanics (Henry Holt and Company/ Godwin Books).  The Gold Medal is awarded to Beatrice Alemagna for On A Magical Do-Nothing Day (HarperCollins Publishers/ Harper).

The Dilys Evans Founder's Award, named after The Original Art founder, celebrates the year’s most promising new talent in children's book illustration. The 2017 jury has selected Victo Ngai's Dazzle Ships: World War I and the Art of Confusion (Lerner Publishing Group/ Millbrook Press).

Each year, The Original Art also recognizes artists whose body of work documents an innovative and pioneering contribution to the field of children’s book illustration. Nominees for the Lifetime Achievement Awards are put forward by past chairs of The Original Art, and the winners are selected by artists whose work has been juried into the show in the previous five years. The Society is proud to announce that the Lifetime Achievement Award winners for 2017 are Lois Ehlert, Evaline Ness, and Garth Williams.

The Society has organized programming in conjunction with The Original Art exhibit. On November 17th, the public is invited to attend Children’s Book Happy Hour: A Behind-the-Scenes Discussion and Exhibit viewing with Lesa Cline-Ransome (author), Kendra Levin (Associate Editorial Director, Viking Children’s Books, author), Laurent Linn (Art Director, Simon & Schuster BFYR, author/illustrator), and Christopher Silas Neal (author/illustrator). Tickets are available to purchase online.

The Society will be hosting several community events including a private presentation and tour for librarians, workshops and portfolio reviews for The School Art League, Exploring the Arts (an organization founded by Tony Bennett and Susan Benedetto), and the High School of Art and Design. Additional programming for parents, caregivers, and their young children, will be announced soon. 

All award winners will be recognized and honored during the Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony, held at the Society of Illustrators (128 East 63rd Street, NYC), on Thursday, November 2 beginning at 6:00pm. Tickets are on sale for $25 members/ $30 nonmembers.

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