Jennifer Yerkes

Simona Mulazzani

Jon Klassen

OA 2013 Press Release
Opening Reception: The Original Art
Featured Artists
The Original Art

October 23, 2013 - December 21, 2013


The Museum of American 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 October 23 through December 21, 2013.

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 2013 exhibit features 125 books selected by a jury of outstanding illustrators, art directors, and editors.  Gold and silver medals were awarded by the jury to three artists for their outstanding books. This year’s Silver Medal winners are Jon Klassen for The Dark (Hachette Book Group / Little, Brown Books for Young Readers) and Simona Mulazzani for I Wish I Had... (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. / Eerdmans Books for Young Readers). The Gold Medal winner is Jennifer Yerkes for A Funny Little Bird (Sourcebooks / Jabberwocky).

Each year, The Original Art honors artists with the Lifetime Achievement Award for their distinguished accomplishments in children’s book illustration. The 2013 awards go to David Macaulay and the late Barbara Cooney. David Macaulay is best known as the author/illustrator of books explaining building construction, the inner workings of machines, and the functions of the human body. He is the recipient of a Caldecott Medal, two Caldecott Honor Book awards, the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, the Christopher Award, and a MacArthur Fellowship, and he was twice the US nominee for the Hans Christian Anderson Medal. Barbara Cooney (1917-2000) created memorable images for her own books and for the work of other authors. Over the course of her sixty-year career, she illustrated over two hundred books, three of which—Miss Rumphius, Island Boy, and Hattie and the Wild Waves—she described as being as close as she’d ever come to an autobiography. She is the recipient of numerous honors including two Caldecott Medals, an American Book Award, and a New York Times citation, and she was selected as the US nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Medal.

Created in 2005, the Founder’s Award celebrates the most promising new talent in children’s book illustration. This year Yuko Shimizu will be awarded the prize for Barbed Wire Baseball (Abrams / Abrams Books for Young Readers). “To have been juried into this exhibition is alone a major achievement and should be celebrated,” says Dilys Evans. “To be selected by the Founder’s Award jury as the most promising new talent is a tremendous vote of confidence in an artist’s ability and future in the field of children’s book illustration.”

The Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony will be held at the Society of Illustrators (128 East 63rd Street, NYC) at 6:00pm on Thursday, October 24th. Tickets are on sale for $25 Members/ $30 Non-Members. A prix-fixe dinner is available by reservation only in the Society’s historic Hall of Fame Dining Room immediately following the Awards Ceremony.

Each year, the Society hosts a special lecture to coincide with The Original Art and celebrate children’s books. This year’s program, titled Planes, Trains, Cars, and Boats: Illustrating Things That Move, will feature award-winning artists Brian Floca, Wendell Minor,
Nancy Carpenter, and Brian Biggs and will be moderated by Laurent Linn, art director and creative advisor to The Original Art. The lecture will be held on Wednesday, November 6 beginning at 6:30pm.