Happy New Year! Hooray! We had a totally fabulous year here at The Carle. Let me share with you a few of our favorite highlights from 2011:
Eric Carle Visit and Book Signing
Eric Carle came to visit not once, but TWICE, this year. Once for his annual summer book signing and then again in September to launch the release of his newest picture book, The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse.
The Carle’s galleries are no longer the only place to see artwork in the Museum. This year we installed two amazing sculptures by renowned artists Leo Lionni and Mo Willems. Eric Carle and Leo Lionni’s family were on hand for the unveiling of Leo Lionni’s sculpture titled, “Imaginary Garden” in July, which is now on view for the public in our Great Hall.
Mo Willem’s bright Red Elephant sculpture is a cheery new addition to our museum’s courtyard. Here’s a link to Mo Willem’s blog where he documents the full journey of the elephant sculpture from idea to installation.
We hosted a year full of fabulous exhibitions. I hope you had the chance to come see them. Each event brought a chance to meet the talented creators behind the artwork. Here’s a small sampling of the authors and illustrators who joined us at The Carle this year for these exhibits.
Monsters & Miracles: A Journey through Jewish Picture Books:
Partners in Wonder: Selections from the Collection of Jane Yolen
What a Circus! The Art of Etienne Delessert
Tomi Ungerer: Chronicler of the Absurd
Barbara McClintock’s The Heartaches of a French Cat
Growing Every Which Way But Up: The Children’s Book Art of Jules Feiffer
This year was the 6th annual Carle Honors ceremony in New York City. This year The Carle honored Lois Ehlert (Artist), Jeanne Steig (Angel), Michael di Capua (Mentor) and Karen Nelson Hoyle (Bridge). To learn more about the recipients and about the awards, you can read my blog post from earlier this year here.
Check out these wonderful decorations from the night to celebrate Artist award recipient Lois Ehlert.
Guests were greeted by the coconut tree and letters from the well-loved Chicka Chicka Boom Boom picture book and tables featured these absolutely stunning centerpieces. Each centerpiece base is an actual book with beautiful and bright tissue paper flowers bursting from the pages.
Other wonderful events hosted here this past year was a viewing of the children’s literature documentary, The Library of the Early Mind, in our auditorium, with a panel of guests featured in the film including Richard Michelson, Grace Lin and Jane Yolen as well as the director Edward J. Delaney and co-producer, Steven Withrow. Here’s a trailer for the documentary:
And here’s a glimpse at the panel discussion that followed that night at The Carle:
The Very Hungry Caterpillar had a birthday party and made some new friends:
We had special storytimes in our Reading Library such as Nancy Ekholm Burkert and her son Rand Burkert’s storytime and blues performance of their new book, Mouse & Lion.
And Frank Viva led a storytime of his New York Times Best Illustrated book, Along a Long Road, and then led his audience into The Carle auditorium to see the artwork from the entire book in one long frieze along the length of the auditorium.
Our annual Educator night was hosted by Lisa Holton, Anita Silvey and Betsy Bird who sparked a wonderfully uplifting discussion about the future of books and technology.
In 2011, we hosted the first in a series of BERL (Barbara Elleman Research Library) Lectures here at The Carle. This year’s lecture was given by publisher, editor, educator and author-extraordinaire Patricia Lee Gauch.
This year we also launched the Shop’s BookTalk interview series. Each month bookseller Andy interviewed an author or illustrator about their books and career, followed by a book signing. In the past year we interviewed Mordicai Gerstein, Norton Juster, Mo Willems, Diane deGroat, Jarrett Krosoczka, Barry Moser, Jeff Mack, Ted & Betsy Lewin, Sophie Blackall, Brian Floca, John Bemelmans Marciano, John Rocco, Sergio Ruzzier, Beth Krommes and Barney Saltzberg. We are excited to be continuing the interview series into the new year and will be making recordings of the interviews available on our website for our faraway friends.
This year also marked the 50th anniversary of a beloved classic, The Phantom Tollbooth. We celebrated this November with a pun-filled Phantom Tollbooth Day with Norton Juster and Leonard Marcus, author of The Annotated Phantom Tollbooth, and guests viewed original Jules Feiffer artwork from the book in our gallery. No Phantom Tollbooth day can be complete without a tollbooth and Toc the dog!
We hopped across the river for R. Michelson Galleries 22nd Annual Children’s Illustration Show where the Carle Bookshop sold books by the featured artists, including special guests Jules Feiffer and Roger Sutton. There was a quite a turn out! Here’s a photo from the night.
Front Row: Paul Jacobs, Rebecca Guay, Diane deGroat, Richard Michelson, Karla Gudeon, Sara Levine, Carol Weis, Angela DiTerlizzi, Heidi Stemple
Second Row: Steven Withrow, Lesley Breen Withrow, Jennifer Swender, Jane Yolen, Jane Dyer, Barry Moser, Burleigh Muten, Barbara Diamond Goldin, Lesleá Newman, Kathy Brown, Tony DiTerlizzi. Third Row: Wendell Minor, Jules Feiffer, Raul Colón, David Hyde Costello, Neil Waldman.
Back Row: Jarrett J. Krosoczka, Tom Warburton, Scott Fischer, Mo Willems, , David Milgrim
Lastly, we ended the year with some great presentations about the best books of 2011. First Horn Book editors Roger Sutton and Martha Parravano shared their picks while talking about their book, A Family of Readers. Click here to see what books they loved from this year.
In December, Susan Bloom was back for her annual Picture Books of Distinction lecture, where she highlighted her picks for the year’s best picture books. Click here for her list. We’re so excited to see what will win the Caldecott and what the new year will bring.
Looking ahead, we have so many exhibitions and events that we’re excited about. We’re especially looking forward to The Carle’s 10th anniversay!
Did you have a favorite moment at The Carle this year? I’d love to hear some of your memories. Happy New Year!