Original Art Show Opening Reception October 29, 2011 19:12 5 Comments

My book We Belong Together was 1 of 150 books recently selected out of 650 entries nationwide to be featured in the Society of Illustrators 2011 Original Art Show, an exhibit which showcases the year’s best children’s books. Here's a link to more information about the show including the complete list of all the illustrators and titles that are featured. The show had its opening reception on October 27, 2011. I have attended this show twice before in 2009 and 2010. I will never forget when I met Eric Carle last year here where he received his lifetime achievement award from the Society of Illustrators! The reception was a madhouse - two floors, filled wall to wall, with people and art! Part of the fun was trying to locate my piece on the walls and there it is! Scholastic chose the last spread from the book to be featured in the show. It was so exciting and a bit surreal to see it on the wall! My book might have actually also been the only board book in the entire show! Out of the 150 books chosen to be included in the show, three were awarded medals-one Gold and two Silver-for best in show. There was an awards ceremony to recognize these winners. Here is Lane Smith accepting one of the Silver medals for his latest book Grandpa Green. That's Kadir Nelson's head in the foreground (that's how crowded it was LOL)! He received the other Silver medal for his book Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans. The Gold medal went to Rosalyn Schanzer for her book Witches! The Absolutely True Tale of Disaster in Salem. The exciting evening was capped off by a wonderful dinner, hosted by Scholastic, at Park Avenue Autumn with Lori Benton, VP and Publisher; David Saylor, VP and creative director; my editor, Jeff Salane, along with other Scholastic editors and designers and three other artists, Leonid Gore, Stephen Savage, and David Ercolini, who also had books published by Scholastic in the show. When we sat down at the table for dinner each of us were presented with a menu that read: "Scholastic Congratulates the Artists in the Original Art Show 2011". How nice is that? Speaking of interesting food combinations, here is one of Park Avenue Autumn's signature dishes - Broccoli with Cheetos! I actually found a video online of the chef at Park Avenue Autumn giving a demonstration on making this dish! What an amazing and inspiring evening and definitely one of the highlights of my life! If you are in the New York area, or will be, I urge all of you to check out the Original Art Show which runs until December 29, 2011. The show gives you such a rare opportunity to take a close look at some of the beautiful work being produced by some of today's best illustrators. The Society of Illustrators 128 East 63rd Street (between Park and Lexington Avenues) Tel: (212) 838-2560 Gallery Hours: 10 AM– 8 PM Tuesday 10 AM– 5 PM Wednesday - Friday 12 noon– 4 PM Saturday Closed most holidays xo-joyce