Artists of all ages and abilities are in for a treat as artist and children’s book illustrator Dianna Bonder takes up residence at the Edmonton Public Library (EPL) October 17 through November 10.
The International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) Canada Joanne Fitzgerald Illustrator in Residence program launched at the Toronto Public Library in 2013 in memory of children’s illustrator Joanne Fitzgerald and, for the first time, is extending beyond that region.
“I know I’m not alone in being constantly curious, and therefore inspired to create stories through art and illustration,” said Bonder. “I’m thrilled to be joining EPL. It’s going to be a fun few weeks working alongside both accomplished and aspiring artists in Edmonton, helping them bring their dreams to life through their work.”
Bonder will host workshops for adults, art activities for children and students, and present to high school and post-secondary classes, as well as hold one-on-one portfolio reviews. Her original artwork will also be on display at the Stanley A. Milner Library from October 17 to November 10.
Bonder studied fine arts, illustration and design, and has worked as a commercial artist. After the success of her first book The Pacific Alphabet in 2001 other books followed, including Accidental Alphabet, Three Royal Tales, Digging Canadian Dinosaurs, Leon’s Song and Dogabet. Bonder is currently working on her 15th children’s book.
“EPL continues to champion both innovation and excellence when it comes to serving our customers, and we are delighted to be hosting the IBBY Canada 2016 Joanne Fitzgerald Illustrator in Residence program,” said Pilar Martinez, CEO of EPL. “This is a fantastic chance for Edmontonians to take their love of art to the next level.”
The IBBY Canada Joanne Fitzgerald Illustrator in Residence program offers a published Canadian children’s book illustrator a month-long residency in a public library, honouring the memory of illustrator Joanne Fitzgerald (1956-2011), whose books include Plain Noodles, Emily’s House and the Governor General’s Literary Award-winner Doctor Kiss Says Yes.
The program is a joint project of IBBY Canada and EPL, with financial support from Fitzgerald’s family. Since its inception, more than 1,400 children, teens and adults have attended library workshops and programs. Previous Illustrators in Residence include Martha Newbigging (2013), Patricia Storms (2014) and John Martz (2015).
— Heather McIntyre, Edmonton Public Library