The Caldecott Medal: 75 Years of Distinguished Illustration
January 8 – June 30, 2013
To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Caldecott Medal, The Carle Museum, located in Amherst, MA, USA is mounting a special exhibition of high quality prints, organized by Barbara Elleman, in the Reading Library. At the end of the 1930s, with urging from publisher and children’s book advocate Frederick Melcher, the American Library Association created a highly welcomed award, to recognize the true artistry of illustration in children’s picture books. Designed to parallel the Newbery Award, established in 1922 and presented each year to a book with outstanding literary qualities, the Randolph Caldecott Medal honored a picture book featuring “the most distinguished illustration of the year.” Its namesake, Randolph Caldecott, was a noted British illustrator of the mid 1800s, who had charmed children with energetic interpretations of nursery rhymes that seemingly burst with humor and mischief, and he was considered worthy to symbolize what was to become an internationally recognized award. In 1938, the first Caldecott Medal was presented to Dorothy Lathrop for Animals of the Bible, A Picture Book, and to mark the 75th anniversary of this award, Barbara Elleman has included a little over one-third of the honorees in the display. The exhibition is grouped into four categories: SNOW, HUSBAND AND WIFE TEAMS, FOLKLORE, and LONG LOVED, LONG REMEMBERED. Additionally, nearly all of the books are shelved in the bookcase dedicated to the memory of Lori Schilder, and we are grateful to her family for funding to enable this and future exhibitions.
Join Guest Curator and former Book Links editor Barbara Elleman for an exhibition tour on January 20 at 3:00 pm. Free with Museum Admission. For more information click here
The Caldecott Award is administered by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). The 75th Anniversary logo was designed by 2008 Caldecott Medal Winner Brian Selznick who has cleverly brought together characters from past Caldecott Medal-winning books — beginning with the very first in 1938 and spanning all the way to the 21st century.