Contact: Helen Dalrymple (202) 707-1940

November 1, 1996

Library of Congress Exhibition Features Picture Books of Last Three Decades

An exhibition of 45 children's picture books from the last 30 years opens at the Library of Congress on Nov. 8. The exhibition, "For the Heart of the Child: Picture Books from the Last Three Decades," is being held in conjunction with a Nov. 8 symposium, "For the Heart of the Child: the Enduring Picture Book," which is sponsored by the Children's Literature Center in the Library of Congress.

The exhibition will be on view in the Mumford Foyer, sixth floor of the James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., through Feb. 8, 1997. Exhibition hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday.

"For the Heart of the Child" features books by authors and illustrators that include Jacob Lawrence, Leo Lionni, Arnold Lobel, Faith Ringgold, Maurice Sendak, William Steig, John Steptoe, Rosemary Wells and Margot Zemach. Created by the staff of the Children's Literature Center, the exhibition is designed to highlight the creativity of the illustrators and writers and to show examples of the variety of genres and formats that can be found in children's picture books.

Featured in the exhibition are books of songs, nonsense rhymes, and tales of long-ago and faraway, as well as books that tell stories or give information, and books for the very youngest readers. There are books with small, whimsical drawings or big, bold graphics; books that ask to be read aloud, and special books that move and pop up. Some have won prizes but many have not, and not all of the items are well-known. All of the picture books on display, however, are linked together by a unity of text and illustration, by the strength and power of their illustrations, and by the inventiveness of their creators.

Since its founding in 1963, the Children's Literature Center in the Library of Congress has been an advocate for the study and use of children's books. The center provides information to children's book specialists and to the general public; recommends and acquires children's books for the Library's collections; and organizes lectures, symposia, and exhibitions.

The Library of Congress collections hold approximately 200,000 children's books, which have come into the Library through copyright deposit, purchase, exchange, and gift. The collection includes stories, folktales, and poetry; non-fiction; books in languages other than English; books in Braille; moveable books; and books in electronic formats.

The exhibition and symposium, "For the Heart of the Child," were made possible by a generous grant from the Ahmanson Foundation of Beverly Hills, CA. The exhibition was designed and mounted by the Library's Interpretive Programs Office.

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PR 96-145
ISSN 0731-3527

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