North Carolina Museum of Art Presents “Rhythms of the Heart: The Illustration of Ashley Bryan”

One of my roles here on the PaperTigers blog is that of Eventful World Coordinator. On the 1st day of each month I post our calendar of children’s book-related events and the majority of my weekly posts focuses on kid lit events happening around the world. From the Philippines to Canada to Australia to Mexico, there are lots of events to attend, vicariously enjoy, or simply be inspired by! I often say that if I ever win the lottery I may just spend a year traveling the world and going from one kid lit event to another. If there is ever an event happening in your area that you think our readers would like to know about, please send me an email ( corinne(at) ) and I would be pleased to include it on our monthly calendar and perhaps do a feature post about it.

Earlier this week I received an email from Joanna Dozier at the North Carolina Museum of Art (Raleigh, NC, USA) in which she wrote “I am pleased to share with you the North Carolina Museum of Art’s most recent exhibition and upcoming spring family festival that celebrate the works of award-winning author, artist, and teacher Ashley Bryan.

As you may know, with a recent Coretta Scott King award and recognition from the New York Public Library, Ashley Bryan is a top name in the world of children’s book authorship and illustration. His work draws upon African American traditions and folklore, blending rhythms of the oral tradition in his writing with a wide range of colorful mediums in his art.

This April, the NCMA presents two exciting opportunities to recognize Bryan’s work, as well as commemorate the release of his two new volumes of spirituals, Walk Together Children and I’m Going to Sing, published by Alazar Press:

On April 15, the NCMA opened Rhythms of the Heart: The Illustration of Ashley Bryan, an exhibition that features Ashley’s original preliminary pencil drawings, watercolor sketches, and completed woodblock prints, ultimately presented in his stunning award-winning books. The exhibition will run through the summer, closing on August 19.

On April 22, the NCMA hosts the  free Spring Family Festival: 
Rhythms of the Heart with music making, art workshops, dancing, and singing, as well as a special appearance by Bryan.”

For  more information visit the North Carolina Museum of Art website by clicking here.

3 Responses to “North Carolina Museum of Art Presents “Rhythms of the Heart: The Illustration of Ashley Bryan””

  1. PragmaticMom Says:

    Yes, yes, yes … I thought I recognized his name from an award. Thanks for mentioning the Coretta Scott King. Did he also win a lifetime achievement award too?

    His illustrations are so gorgeous!

  2. Rosemarie Gulla Says:

    I am so happy to have discovered Papertigers through my friends at the North Carolina Museum of Art and I wanted to followup on Ashley’s latest award. At June in Anaheim, at the ALA Conference, he will receive the 2012 Coretta Scott King – Virginia Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award. This high honor was won last year by Henrietta Mays Smith. I have had the privilege of working with both of them in publishing new editions of his award winning books of spirituals that were allowed to go out of print. Walk Together Children and I’m Going To Sing have been lying silent for quite some time. Knowing that each of those volumes took three years apiece to produce because every note, bar line, etc. was hand cut and hand pressed as well as those magnificent linocuts, I figured out how to use some inheritance money to place them back into the hands of the public. Ashley contributed new colorized cover art and a new introduction. Henrietta wrote a beautiful foreword. We chose the best paper, larger trim size and printed them in the USA. Now, they’re back and better than ever! I have learned that sometimes people can step up and do the right thing – like getting these important books back into print.

  3. Marjorie Says:

    I agree, Pragmatic Mom, his illustrations are gorgeous – and Rosemarie, thank you for filling us in on the background to getting those book back into print. I have a particular fondness for children’s books that focus on music and will be looking out for these.