Golden Legacy: 65 Years of Golden Books


Golden Legacy: 65 Years of Little Golden Books

October 19, 2014–January 4, 2015 (members’ opening party October 18)

NCCIL-Golden Books show, 2007-09-07.This exhibition presents the most extensive public showing ever of original illustration art from American publishing’s best loved and most important picture-book series, Little Golden Books.

Launched in 1942—the first full year of America’s involvement in the Second World War—Little Golden Books made high-quality illustrated books available at affordable prices for the first time to millions of young children and their parents. Among the artists who contributed to the ambitious series were greats of the European émigré community (including Garth Williams, Feodor Rojankovsky and Tibor Gergely) who had gathered in New York as the European situation worsened; alumni of the Walt Disney Studios (including Gustaf Tenggren, Martin Provensen, J.P. Miller and Mary Blair), who came East for the artistic freedom and control associated with picture-book making; and such American originals as Eloise Wilkin, Elizabeth Orton Jones, Richard Scarry and Hilary Knight.

Sixty-two masterpieces of original illustration art by these and other artists—chosen from the vast Random House archive—will be featured in the exhibition, including examples from such picture-book classics as The Poky Little Puppy, Tootle, Home for a Bunny, The Kitten Who Thought He Was a Mouse, The Color Kittens and I Can Fly.

This exhibition is sponsored by the Gallery Council of the Memorial Art Gallery and Kite Tails LLC.

Pictured: Aurelius Battaglia, Little Boy with a Big Horn (1950). Gouache.

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