Wyoming Museum Debuts National Children’s Book Illustration Award

National Museum of Wildlife Art’s Bull-Bransom Award honors nature focus

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – May 20, 2010 – In the tradition of such prestigious children’s book illustrator honors as the Caldecott, Coretta Scott King and Hans Christian Andersen awards, the National Museum of Wildlife Art of the United States is announcing the creation of the annual Bull-Bransom Award to recognize excellence in children’s book illustration with a focus on wildlife and nature.  The winner of the inaugural Bull-Bransom Award will be announced at 7 p.m. on July 8, 2010 at the museum’s Summer Exhibition Opening event.

“We are excited for the opportunity to honor the work of some of the extremely talented artist-illustrators depicting the natural world in contemporary children’s books,” says Ponteir Sackrey, the museum’s director of development and marketing, noting that the award, to be presented in the form of a medal, will be given to a living North American children’s book illustrator for a book published during the previous calendar year.

The new award is named for Charles Livingston Bull and Paul Bransom, among the first American artist-illustrators to specialize in wildlife subjects.  Both artists had tremendous impact on younger masters of wildlife art including Bob Kuhn; both created numerous children’s books during their careers, including contributing illustrations to different editions of Jack London’s classic Call of the Wild; and both are well represented in the National Museum of Wildlife Art’s collection. 

Perched on a butte overlooking the National Elk Refuge, the National Museum of Wildlife Art holds more than 5,000 catalogued items in its premier fine arts collection under its mission of exploring humanity’s relationship with nature.  The museum actively engages children in that mission, with kid-friendly animal footprints on the floors, fun kid kits, “Young at Art” programs and a Children’s Discovery Gallery – as well as exhibitions featuring the work of familiar children’s illustrators, including a show based on Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax last summer and this year’s much anticipated “Wild New Ways: Maurice Sendak’s Animal Kingdom,” May 15 – September 19, 2010. 

A member of the Museums West consortium and accredited by the American Association of Museums, the National Museum of Wildlife Art of the United States provides an exciting calendar of exhibitions from its permanent collection and changing exhibitions from around the globe and has been featured in media including the L.A. Times and The New York Times.  The museum’s recently published full-color book, Wildlife in American Art, features extensive images from the collection and wildlife art history essays.  A complete schedule of museum exhibitions and events is available online at www.wildlifeart.org.

Media Contacts: Darla Worden, WordenGroup Strategic Public Relations, 307.734.5335, darla@wordenpr.com; Ponteir Sackrey, National Museum of Wildlife Art, 307.732.5444, psackrey@wildlifeart.org.

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