Shortlist announced for the 2018 Klaus Flugge Prize

Boxes for a cat, and a box holding the Night; the story of a Mars explorer, and the adventures of a paper boat; a child seeking a new home: five original picture books by talented debut illustrators make the shortlist for the 2018 Klaus Flugge Prize

  • Third year of the award founded to honour Klaus Flugge, the man behind classic picture books including Elmer the Elephant and the Little Princess
  • Children’s Laureate Lauren Child and 2017 winner Francesca Sanna among judges
  • Shortlist announced live at special event at Foyles Charing Cross Road

Today (Wednesday 16 May) the shortlist for the 2018 Klaus Flugge Prize is revealed. Set up to honour publisher Klaus Flugge, founder of Andersen Press and a key figure in children’s picture books, this important new award, now in its third year, is for the most promising and exciting newcomer to children’s picture book illustration.

From a longlist of fifteen picture books by debut illustrators, a panel of judges comprising Children’s Laureate and acclaimed illustrator Lauren Child; Francesca Sanna, 2017 Klaus Flugge Prize winner; leading art director Goldy Broad; and Charlotte Colwill, head of children’s books at Foyles, selected a shortlist of five.

The shortlist includes a wide range of subjects, including true stories as well as domestic and magical adventure, while the range of artistic techniques is equally varied. The five books are:

The Night Box, Ashling Lindsay (Egmont)
Written by Louise Greig, editor Melissa Fairley, art editor Tiffany Leeson

Ashling Lindsay is an illustrator with huge potential. This is very accomplished technically, beautifully evocative and the judges were struck by the skilful composition.

My Name is Not Refugee, Kate Milner, (Barrington Stoke)
Editor Emma Hargrave, art editor Julie-Ann Murray

Mood and emotion are beautifully portrayed; Milner chooses to use a limited palette but avoids making it too dark; she draws really well and the book’s construction always leaves space for the reader.

Curiosity: The Story of a Mars Rover, Markus Motum, (Walker Studio)
Editor Denise Johnstone-Burt, art editor Louise Jackson

Motum is definitely an illustrator to watch. Though this is an information book, you feel there is a story being told, with pace and animation. His work reminded the judges of iconic Czech illustrator M Sasek.

The Real Boat, Victoria Semykina, (Templar)
Written by Marina Aromshtam, editors Katie Howarth & Lisa Edwards, art editor Genevieve Webster and Maya Schleifer

There are absolutely beautiful illustrations within the book, some of them exquisitely good, and the judges are excited to see what Semyinka will do next. They particularly admire the skilful change of scale that occurs throughout the little boat’s journey.

Big Box, Little Box, Edward Underwood (Bloomsbury)
Editor Emma Blackburn

Colour and detail in Underwood’s book are both very pleasing indeed; graphically it is a stand-out picture book with superb use of colour and composition. There’s a slight sense of Lynley Dodd in the way the layout carries you through the story.

Chair of the judges Julia Eccleshare said: “Our expert judges were presented with a very varied set of picture books and have selected a shortlist that feels exciting and full of potential. These are five talented illustrators and five highly original picture books. Each artist, in their different way, successfully guides readers into and through the stories they are telling via their illustration. We were delighted once again to announce the list live at a special event; picture book illustration, as championed by Klaus Flugge throughout his career, deserves proper recognition as an important and vital art form.”

The winner will be revealed at an award ceremony in London on Wednesday 12th September 2018 and will receive a cheque for £5,000.

The shortlist was announced by Lauren Child at a special event at Foyles Charing Cross Road. Before the announcement Lauren discussed contemporary picture book illustration in front of the live audience with Julia Eccleshare.

For more information, interview requests and images contact Andrea Reece
020 8889 1292/ 07807893369


The Klaus Flugge Prize is funded personally by Klaus Flugge and run independently of Andersen Press.

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