Travels with Brian Floca
Travels with Brian Floca

Organized by National Center for Children's Illustrated Literature (Abilene, TX) and sponsored at Joslyn Art Museum by Fran and Rich Juro.

Travels with Brian Floca presents detailed ink and watercolor illustrations from the Caldecott Medal-winning Locomotive that, along with the book’s poetic text, vividly portray one family’s journey on the transcontinental railroad, from Omaha to Sacramento, in its early years. Floca’s books explore other modes of travel, as well, from Moonshot, which describes the historic Apollo 11 space flight, from liftoff to splashdown; and Lightship, about ships that served as “floating beacons” in places where lighthouses could not be built; to The Racecar Alphabet, which takes young readers zooming through 100 years of racecars.

Featured in the exhibition are nearly 100 drawings and paintings from 25 books including Floca’s first published illustrations for the renowned graphic novel City of Light, City of Dark (a job he landed as an undergraduate student); drawings from the popular Poppy series; and his most recent Old Wolf, all authored by Newberry Medalist Edward Irving Wortis, better known by the pen name Avi. In between are artworks stepping back in time to detail Civil War stories written by Deborah Hopkinson; Jane Greenberg and Sandra Jordan’s behind-the-scenes look at Martha Graham’s collaborative process for creating the ballet Appalachian Spring; and many more.

Brian Floca is the author and illustrator of numerous acclaimed books for children, among them, Locomotive, awarded the 2014 Caldecott Medal. His books have received four Robert F. Sibert Honor awards, a silver medal from the Society of Illustrators, and have twice been selected for the New York Times 10 Best Illustrated Books list. Born and raised in Temple, Texas, Floca now lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

What's pictured: Cover art for Locomotive, 2013, pen and ink, watercolor, and gouache, © Brian Floca

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