Posts Tagged ‘Bologna Book Fair’

Bologna 2012: Trends of the Show

April 3, 2012

Diane Roback and John A. Sellers´ retrospective on the Bologna Childrens Book Fair:

By most accounts, this year’s Bologna Book Fair was a vibrant one, with packed schedules and continued excitement for fiction. Unlike two years ago, when Hervé Tullet’s picture book Press Here was the title everyone was talking about, attendees didn’t crown a book of the fair, and were by and large pleased about that. As Wernick & Pratt agent Marcia Wernick put it, “There was no buzz book this year, and it’s been really nice. Everyone can focus on getting stuff done.”

Full article in Publishers Weekly here.

Our fabulous photographer Stefan Tell attended the Bologna Fair, and here´s a few good shoots: 

The annoucement of the 2012 ALMA recipient in Illustrators Café.

The happy publisher directly after the annoucement; Bärbel Dorweiler from Querido.

Maria Beatrice Medina, Banco del Libro, the 2007 ALMA recipient, visits the exhibition.

Illustrator Ryôji Arai from Japan, one of the 2005 ALMA recipients, is beeing interviewed.

Judith Drews from Illustratoren Organisation (Germany), one of the nominating bodies, visits the ALMA exhibition.

Today is the day!

March 20, 2012

This year’s recipient or recipients will be announced today. This moment, he jury is gathered in Vimmerby, where the final meet will take place. At 1 pm the jury chairman Larry Lempert announces the 2012 recipient live on

The announcement is also broadcast to the Bologna Children’s Book Fair. The program starts at 12.40 in the Illustrators Café.

Children have a right to culture, say laureates

February 21, 2012

“Children need art and stories and poems and music as much as they need love and food and fresh air and play,” according to Philip Pullman, 2005 recipient of the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA). Pullman is one of the 11 laureates featured in an exhibition marking ALMA’s 10th anniversary, to be staged at the world’s biggest book fair for children’s and young adult literature in Bologna, Italy.

The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA) is 10 years old this year. For a decade now, the award has promoted interest in children’s and young adult literature around the world. The anniversary celebrations start at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, from 19 to 22 March, where a number of ALMA laureates will take part in various seminars.

“This will be the first time so many award recipients have all been present in the one place,” says Helen Sigeland, director of ALMA. “We’re looking forward to plenty of stimulating dialogue between our laureates and the public. Our exhibition and commemorative booklet will focus on promoting interest in children’s and young adult literature in an international context.”

Australian author Sonya Hartnett is one of the laureates visiting Bologna to mark the award’s 10th anniversary. She will be discussing the importance of children having access to good books with fellow author and laureate Katherine Paterson.

“A quality book for young people should leave them a different and slightly better person than the one they were when they began reading the book,” says Hartnett.

The laureates taking part in the Bologna event are Kitty Crowther, illustrator (Belgium, 2010), the Tamer Institute for Community Education, promotor of reading (Palestinian territories, 2009), Sonya Hartnett, author (Australia, 2008), Banco del Libro, promotor of reading (Venezuela, 2007), Katherine Paterson, author (USA, 2006), Ryôji Arai, illustrator (Japan, 2005) and Lygia Bojunga, author (Brazil, 2004).

The programme for the Bologna Children’s Book Fair will be available shortly on the Fair’s website.

The recipient or recipients of the 2012 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award will be announced to coincide with the Bologna Children’s Book Fair. The announcement will be made on Tuesday 20 March, at 1 pm, at Astrid Lindgren’s Näs in Vimmerby, Sweden. It will be broadcast via a live link to Bologna and online at

The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award is celebrating its 10th anniversary!

January 16, 2012

The world’s largest award for children’s and young adult literature is turning ten years old in 2012. The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA) has contributed to raising the status of books for children and young people for a decade now. Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth, Sweden’s Minister for Culture, says: ­
– The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award highlights literature for children and young adults in an important way, giving it a prominent place in society.

When Astrid Lindgren, Sweden’s most renowned writer, passed away in 2002, the Swedish Government adopted the decision to set up a memorial award fund. Since its establishment, eleven award recipients have been recognized for their lifetime achievements in the arts and their efforts to promote literacy.  

Quoting Minister Adelsohn Liljeroth:
– The award promotes interest in literature for children and young people all over the world, and reinforces the rights of children on a global level. Year upon year, the award has received increasing media attention and had greater and greater impact. This gives rise to optimism about children’s literature and active reading.

Over the course of the decade, more than 550 candidates from over 90 nations have been nominated. Nominating bodies include organizations and research institutes related to literature for children and young people. Today the ALMA award office cooperates with more than 400 nominating bodies worldwide.

The tenth birthday of the award will be celebrated with an exhibition about the award at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, the world’s largest book fair for young readers, to be held in Bologna, Italy from 19 to 22 March 2012. On 20 March at 1 p.m., the name of this year’s recipient or recipients will be announced. The announcement will be made in Vimmerby, Sweden, where Astrid Lindgren grew up. It will be webstreamed to the book fair in Bologna and on the website of the award:

Major initiative for children’s literature in Bologna 2012-2013

September 23, 2011

Next year the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award will be presented for the tenth time and celebrated with an anniversary exhibition at the 2012 Bologna Children’s Book Fair in Italy. During the fair, the 2012 award recipient will also be announced.     

In March 2013, Sweden will be the guest of honour at the international Bologna Fair. The Swedish Arts Council (Kulturrådet) announced this today at a press conference in Gothenburg.

Swedish Minister of Culture, Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth, Roberta Chinni, responsible for the Bologna Children's Book Fair, and Kennet Johansson, Director General Swedish Arts Council

“We have been given a unique opportunity to showcase Swedish children’s and young adult literature in an international context. The rights of children and young people are central to Sweden’s cultural policy,” says Minister for Culture Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth. 

“We are responsible for the world’s largest prize for children’s and young adult literature and we now see this as a further opportunity to promote Swedish literature and to encourage children and young adults to read.  We are extremely pleased about being the guest of honour at the Bologna Fair,” says Kennet Johansson, Director General of the Swedish Arts Council.

More information is available in our newsroom here.

Nikolaus Heidelbach

April 17, 2011

Today is the last chance to see Nikolaus Heidelbach’s exhibition: Almost Alone. Drawings for Everyone curated by Hamelin in Bologna. This exhibition was one of the highlights during the Bologna Book Fair as it is an unique opportunity to get an insight into one of Germany’s greatest contemporary illustrators.

The work of Nikolaus Heidelbach is not easily categorized. His choice of subject matters, often touching on the taboo in children’s literature, show a childhood which is neither secure nor innocent.

Among others, the exhibition features the illustrations from Was machen die Jungs? published by Beltz & Gelberg in 1999.  In this compelling book each letter of the alphabet is represented by a boy in a particular situation. Charles, for example, makes a Faustian bargain with a childlike devil in exchange of a pacifier.

Bologna Book Fair in 60 seconds

April 5, 2011

Author Bart Moeyaert, nominated to the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, made this great short film which really catches the pulse of the Bologna Children’s Bookfair:


April 4, 2011

Each year Bologna Book Fair presents a guest of honor – this year it was Lithuania’s turn. Contemporary Lithaunian illustration was displayed in an inventive and creative exhibition, Illustrarium.

While Illustrarium showed the diversity of Lithuanian illustration today, a lesser known part of Lithuanian children’s book history was on display in the city center. The exhibition Soviet gave an unique insight into Lithuanian children’s book illustration during the Soviet occupation 1945-1990. Some of the exhibited books were examples of how children’s literature can be an instrument for propaganda (in this case communist propaganda). Others showed how children’s books can sustain and reinforce national identity. Others still were simply great illustration.

Especially notable is the work made in the 60ies, by artists such as Birute Zilyte and Vladislovas Zilius is vibrating with color – combining folk art with pop art in a wonderfully creative way!

Spending time at Lithuania’s exhibitions in Bologna was a very positive experience – they managed to show both the strength of their children’s book illustration today as well as present their fascinating recent history of illustration.

Shaun Tan comments on the award

April 2, 2011

We highly recommend visiting Shaun Tan’s website, where one can spend hours reading his own reflections on his books and art. In the news section he comments on the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award:

…”The award is not only a personal achievement, but I think reflects broader efforts of Australian authors, illustrators, publishers and supporting associations to promote innovative storytelling on an international stage. I’ve often that our books are some of the most daringly experimental, constantly testing tradition: it’s also worth noting that Melbourne-based author Sonja Hartnett also won this award in 2008.

Of course, it’s a incredible honour to be simply be considered for this award, let alone to win it. It does give me pause to reflect on my work as a whole within an international context. I remember first visiting Bologna Book Fair and feeling terribly insignificant and somewhat out of place as a young illustrator from Perth, wondering how my work fit into the vast scheme of this particular universe. It’s hugely gratifying to think that so many years of patient commitment and experiment, often following quite idiosyncratic obsessions, have been appreciated and recognized in this way. Many thanks are of course due to my publishers in Australia for all of their support, and those individuals and organizations that have been so active in bringing the work of Australian creators to an international stage.” …

6 days, 4 hours, 30 min

March 23, 2011

Now there’s less than a week left until the 2011 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award is announced at Astrid Lindgrens Näs in Vimmerby, Sweden!

Astrid Lindgren Näs is where Astrid Lindgren was born, more than 100 years ago. Her childhood home is still intact and is open for visit all year around. A must for anyone interested in Astrid Lindgren’s work, since the environment at Näs was the source of much inspiration for her books.

Next to the childhood home stands the pavilion, the cultural center, where the announcement is held.   

Present at the announcement in Vimmerby is, of course, chairman of the jury Larry Lempert together with jurymembers Maria Lassén-Seger, Ulf Boëthius, Ulla Lundqvist, Lars H Gustafsson, Mats Berggren and Birgitta Fransson.

Just before 1 pm CET, Kerstin Brunnberg, chairman of the Swedish Arts Council will greet the audience.  After which Larry Lempert will read the jury’s citation and reveal the recipent(s). The announcement is followed by a presentation of the winner(s) by jurymember Maria Lassén-Seger.

The whole event will be broadcasted on our website as well as directly to Illustrator’s Café at Bologna Book Fair, Italy.