RENOWNED POLITICAL CARTOONIST SCOOPS GREENAWAY
FOR FIRST INFORMATION BOOK TO WIN IN 27 YEARS
The Observer cartoonist, wins The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal
for Pirate Diary, a fictionalised account of the adventures
of young Jake Carpenter on the high seas. From cabin boy to pirate,
with marooning, mutinies and storms galore, this exciting information
book for children from 8 to 14 is the first to win such an accolade
in nearly three decades.
Chris was always enthusiastic about the idea of pirates but when
he spoke with author Richard Platt the harsh necessities of historical
accuracy came into play. "Everything I got excited about
got shot down. No parrots, eye-patches or wooden legs. Thank god
there were weapons and amputations!" In fact, Chris’s drawings
are meticulously researched and he loved the challenge
of capturing a young boy’s emotions as he copes with his new environment.
"Whether it’s trying to stay in a hammock, knocking the
weevils out of a biscuit or assisting in ship-board surgery, I’m
always interested in what film-makers call ‘the response shot’."
Karen Usher, Chair of this year's CILIP Youth Libraries Group judges
says, "It’s been twenty seven years since an information
book has won the Greenaway, but Chris’s incredible variety of style
and gift for capturing character stood out. He can move from detail
to a huge canvas within a page
and his use of perspective and humour will stimulate and entertain
children and young people for a long time to come."
Instigated in 1956, The Kate Greenaway Medal is awarded annually
by CILIP for
"outstanding illustration in a children's book".
This year xxx will present the medal at 12 noon on Friday 12 July
at a special ceremony at the British Library. The Greenaway winner
receives the annual £5000 Colin Mears Award. Colin Mears, a Worthing
based accountant and children's book collector, left a bequest to
provide Greenaway winners from 2000 onwards with a cash award as
well as the coveted Medal.
Chris’s mother spotted his talent early. Married to a liberal Anglican
Vicar, she soon learned the surest way to keep their son quiet during
sermons was to give him paper and pen. Chris studied art under Raymond
Briggs at Brighton Polytechnic and has developed a dual career as
illustrator and political cartoonist. He’s been with The Observer
since 1995 and describes himself as
having "a polite drawing style in which I can say very rude
things". His influences are classic: Tenniel and E H Shepherd.
Without intending to he has followed their career trajectory almost
Childhood library visits inspired him to get a Saturday job stamping
books. Since then he has been a staunch supporter of the service,
speaking at national events. "The Library Service is an
incredible resource which is often overlooked," he says,
"as is the wealth of knowledge that librarians possess."
Chris lives in Brighton with his wife, illustrator and print-maker
Joanne Burroughes and their three children.
From the shortlist
of eight books, Fix-It Duck by Jez Alborough and Sometimes
I Like To Curl Up In A Ball by Charles Fuge, author Vicki Churchill,
have both been Highly Commended.
Notes for Editors:
- The 2001
Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards are announced in 2002. Books
published between 01/01/01 and 31/12/01 are eligible.
- The Colin
Mears Award of £5000 to the Greenaway winner was made possible
by a bequest from Colin Mears, a collector of children’s books.
Mears, a Worthing based accountant had a long-standing interest
in children’s illustration and was a keen collector of works by
Kate Greenaway and Edward Ardizzone. The bulk of his collection
has been left to the Worthing Museum and Art Gallery.
- ‘The Best
of Carnegie’ and the ‘The Best of Kate Greenaway’ - two leaflets
featuring the shortlists and the best of the rest of the nominations
for 2001, will be published by the Youth Libraries Group on 12
- CILIP: the
Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals is
the leading professional body for Librarians and Information Managers.
It was formed on 1 April 2002 by the unification of The Library
Association and the Institute of Library and Information Professionals.
It has 23,000 Members, most of whom are personal Members whose
working environment includes libraries in higher and further education,
industrial and commercial organizations, the health sector, professional
and learned societies, government departments and agencies, schools,
voluntary organisations and national and public libraries.
- The Youth
Libraries Group (YLG) is a Special Interest Group of CILIP. It
works in a ‘pressure group’ role, independently and with other
professional organisations, to preserve and influence the provision
of quality literature and library services for children and young
people, both in public libraries and school library services.
Chris Riddell Pirate Diary
(Richard Platt); Walker Books, age range 8+
Jez Alborough Fix-it
Duck, Picture Lions, age range 3+
Sometimes I Like to Curl Up in a Ball (Vicki Churchill);
Gullane, age range 2+
Chris Riddell was Highly Commended for Castle Diary in 1999
(author: Richard Platt) and Commended for Something Else
in 1994 (author Kathryn Cave).