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Artist and Author Brian Pinkney to Deliver 2024 Barbara Elleman Research Library (BERL) Lecture

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is pleased to welcome award-winning author and illustrator Brian Pinkney as guest speaker for the 2024 Barbara Elleman Research Library (BERL) Lecture on Saturday, April 6 at 2:00 pm at the Museum’s Amherst, MA location. The lecture is free with Museum admission.


In the 12th annual BERL lecture, Pinkney will reflect upon his acclaimed career. Pinkney is the illustrator of several highly praised picture books including The Faithful Friend, In the Time of the Drums, and Duke Ellington. His many awards include two Caldecott Honors, a Coretta Scott King Illustration Award, four Coretta Scott King Illustration Honors, and the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award. His work was exhibited in The Carle’s 2018 exhibition, Our Voice: Celebrating the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards (2021); Picture the Dream: The Story of the Civil Rights Movement (2021) and most recently, Horse Tales: Galloping Through Children’s Books (2023). There will be a book signing and light reception following the lecture.  

The BERL Lecture is an annual event featuring the country’s top scholars, book collectors, researchers, editors, authors, and illustrators in children’s literature. Past BERL Lecture speakers include Patricia Lee Gauch (2011); Betsy Hearne (2012); Peter Sís (2013); Timothy Young (2014); Jerry Pinkney (2015); Grace Lin (2016); Steven Kellogg (2017); Anita Silvey (2018); Neal Porter (2019), Wendell Minor (2022) and Dr. Jonda C. McNair (2023).

About The BERL  

Established in 2003, the BERL is a non-circulating research collection of more than 1,500 volumes of professional resources and children’s books devoted to the study of children’s literature and the visual arts. The library is named for former Museum Trustee and Book Links magazine Founding Editor Barbara Elleman. Together with her late husband Don Elleman, she generously contributed the books that form the core of the collection.

The unique organization of the collection highlights areas of interest such as author and illustrator biographies, literary criticism, illustration studies, and more. It is ideally suited for students, teachers, librarians, and other professionals interested in the study and use of children’s literature and the visual arts. The Picture Book Archive contains over 1,500 picture books from prominent illustrators from the 1970s to the early 2000s and titles from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In addition to being a resource for the public, the collection is often drawn upon for The Carle’s exhibitions and programming.

About Barbara Elleman

Barbara Elleman received her bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and her master’s degree in library science from the University of Denver. She worked as a school and public librarian before accepting a position in 1975 as a reviewer and editor for the American Library Association’s Booklist magazine. In 1990 she created and became editor-in-chief of Book Links. After leaving ALA in 1996, Elleman was named Distinguished Scholar of Children’s Literature at Marquette University in Milwaukee where she lectured and promoted the use of children’s books in the School of Education.

She has written books on Tomie dePaola, the most recent, The Worlds of Tomie dePaola: The Art and Stories of the Legendary Artist and Author (2021), as well as Virginia Lee Burton A Life in Art (2002). Elleman also guest curated, in 2009, two highly acclaimed exhibitions of original work by Virginia Lee Burton and Tomie dePaola. During her career, Elleman was particularly attracted to the art of the picture book. Her collection reflects that interest, with books about the illustrated book and picture books.  

About the Museum  

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is the international champion for picture book art. We collect, preserve, and exhibit original art, encourage guests of all ages to read and create art, and foster an ever-growing audience passionate about picture book art.  
The late Eric and Barbara Carle co-founded the Museum in November 2002. Eric Carle was the renowned author and illustrator of more than 70 books, including the 1969 classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Since opening, the 43,000-square foot facility has served one million visitors. The Carle houses 9,000 permanent collection works of art. The Carle has three art galleries, an art studio, a theater, picture book and scholarly libraries, and educational programs for families, scholars, educators, and school children. Bobbie’s Meadow is an outdoor space that combines art and nature. Educational offerings include professional training for educators around the country and master’s degree programs in children’s literature with Simmons University. The Museum offers digital resources, including art activities, book recommendations, collections, exhibition videos, and workshops for online visitors. Learn more at and on Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram @CarleMuseum.   
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