The IBBY Honour List is a biennial selection of outstanding, recently published children’s books honouring writers, illustrators and translators from IBBY member countries.
Every second year, IBBY organizes a touring exhibition of books from the illustration category and we are delighted to be currently hosting the exhibition.
Consisting of 59 fiction and non-fiction illustrated books, which have been written in a variety of languages (or wordless in some cases) and representing many different cultures, there is something here for everyone. One of our art students, who came to see the exhibition yesterday, commented on how books in the collection would be ideal in teaching children about character design. Today, another student commented on how great it was to have such a diverse collection of books, representing countries and cultures from all over the world.
Here is a quick look at some of the books that are in the collection.
Un tour de cochons (Pig’s trick) by Françoise Rogier
A story from Belgium written in French, that tells a modern tale of the Three Little Pigs. The pigs are about to leave home and move to the forest, but they are intelligent enough to predict a visit from a wolf. And so they make their cunning plan. The images really tell the story in this book, which only contains a sparse amount of text. The illustrations were created using a “scratch card” technique – a black card scratched to create white drawings. This is a very witty story that will be adored by children.
Gizo Gizo! A tale from the Zongo Lagoon by Emily Williamson
We are told that a storyteller in Ghana begins their tale by saying “Ga ta nan ga ta nanku!” (I am about to begin!) and the children respond “Tazo Mujita!” (We are all ears) This folktale introduces us to crab, tortoise and spider, three friends who live near the lagoon. Spider has some bad habits and he pollutes the lagoon in his quest to find gold. This causes all of the animals to get sick. But spider eventually learns his lesson and brings the lagoon back to life.
E aplisti chelona (The greedy tortoise) by Kelly Matathia Covo
Tortoise and hare are the best of friends, but one day tortoise decides that his shell is too small and he needs somewhere bigger to live. This wise tale from Greece is all about greed and arrogance. Tortoise and hare are depicted hanging out as friends, before tortoise embarks on his adventure. His house then transforms into different shapes, each one slightly bigger than the previous one, until finally he struggles to hold up his “tower”. There is a happy ending as both friends are reunited. The striking illustrations are created using mixed media – pencil, watercolours and digital applications and children will enjoy spotting the ladybird that appears on each page.
Le Ruban (The ribbon) by Adrien Parlange
This is a is a very clever book where a ribbon is used to turn a two-dimensional book into a three-dimensional book. The ribbon becomes the hot water for tea, spaghetti, a shoe lace and the thread of a balloon. Each scene or image is described using two or three French words, written at the top of the page.
Después de la Lluvia by Migual Cerro
Written in Spanish with vibrant acrylic illustrations, this story is a modern fable about adapting to the environment. It challenges misconceptions – a fox, traditionally viewed as cunning, is the hero of this story. When the forest is flooded, the animals are reluctant to let the fox help in their search for food. However, the fox finds another way to be of assistance.
La pequeňa niňa is a stunning picture book from Peru, which explores the curiosity and imagination of a young girl. We see her walking on a tightrope, swimming in soup, flying with an umbrella and pretending to kill dragons.
Cuda wiank. Polski folklore dla mlodszych I starszych celebrates Polish traditional culture, dress, music and art, while giving a nod to the contemporary world at times
Finally, Domu gatari is the story of life in Hiroshima, Japan before and after the atomic bomb. It is told from the point of view of the Genbaku Dome, the only structure to remain standing after the atrocity.
The IBBY exhibition is on display at the Curriculum Centre until the 15th February and we would strongly encourage you all to come along and explore its exquisite and diverse collection of illustrated children’s books.