The Slovenia Times

An Image of a Book... A Book of Images...



Once again, the biennial has recognized the most meritorious achievements in the field of illustration with the presenting of the Hinko Smrekar awards. This year, the four-member jury also presented two lifetime achievement awards to Marija Vogelnik and Milan Bizovicar. Marija Vogelnik's life's work is rich and full. The works for which she will be best remembered are the original illustrations for H. C. Andersen's Fairy Tales, Levstik's Najdihojca, Zupancic's Kanglica as well as a number of other children's books. Besides being an illustrator, she also engaged in literature and dance and also worked as a critic of the latter. Mirko Bizovicar is an innovative author who has made a number of breakthroughs in the field of illustration. However, his illustrations of books such as Kosmac's Tantadruj and the children's books, Najdihojca and Zajc's Abecedarije, represent just a part of his work. His corpus also contains more than a hundred illustrations published in youth magazines and comic strips. In addition to new works, the biennial regularly profiles pioneer illustrators. This year's focus is on Maksim Gaspari (1883-1980), who is famous for his portraits of the renowned Slovenian poet France Preseren. The biennial is therefore a place where the old and the new meet to give an impression of Slovenian illustration; a place where the names of established Slovenian illustrators appear alongside those just emerging. The exhibition plays an important role in the development and promotion of illustration as an independent form of artistic expression. After all, illustration is the first art form that a child has contact with and therefore influences the way generations understand the visual arts.


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