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ASSOCIATION OF ILLUSTRATORS: WORLD ILLUSTRATION AWARDS 2016 | ART PREVIEW

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Art Preview

Aberystwyth Arts Centre

Until Sun 9 July

This truly international exhibition is celebrating four decades of innovative exhibitions that present the best pieces of illustration from across the world. It is the result of the World Illustration Awards and the 50 pieces in the exhibition have been selected from thousands of submissions.

This year, the award received entries from 66 countries, including entries from South Korea, Australia, Israel and across Europe. The competition was split up into eight categories with children’s books, advertising, and editorial proving particularly popular. The pieces that were shortlisted and won categories spanned various mediums including everything from traditional book illustrations and posters to sculptures and textile forms, even GIFs.

On reflecting on this year’s entries and competition, Curator Sabine Reimer said: “Submissions can give an indication of the current themes preoccupying illustrators. This year is notable for darker, more challenging work, exploring areas such as the refugee crisis.

“The exhibition balances these serious works, such as David Foldvari’s evocative image of the migrant crisis commissioned by Save the Children, with lighter works such as Richard Lewington’s stunning depictions of bees for Royal Mail and Levente Szabo’s arresting BAFTA Award brochures”.

The exhibition was made possible due to a collaboration between the Directory of Illustration in California, and Somerset House in London and this coming together of groups is reflected in the diverse set of illustrations that are on show.

Pieces that should not be missed are the Balbusso Twins’ Portrait of Richard II commissioned by Penguin Press for its series of books on Britain’s kings and queens. The dynamic piece captures the king’s essence and feels both regal and intriguing. Another piece to note is a bold piece by Ella Cohen from Isreal. Commissioned by Berlin-based Theater an der Parkaue and the Israeli Embassy, the piece called Playground Israel image, shows how illustration can surpass the boundaries that limit other forms.

If you are interested in illustration as a medium for communication and expression or are looking to understand the form beyond storybooks, then this is definitely an exhibition worth visiting.

Admission: free. Info: 019 7062 3232 / www.aberystwythartscentre.co.uk

words ELOUISE HOBBS

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