House of Illustration & Folio Society Partner in Book Illustration Competition 2015

London, 8th January 2015—The Book Illustration Competition (BIC) continues its mission to seek out the very best in illustration talent, both in the UK and overseas. Approaching its fifth year, the esteemed competition is a partnership between The Folio Society and House of Illustration. It has fast become a leading platform for illustrators to showcase their talents, with the winner receiving an exclusive commission worth £5,000 to illustrate a new Folio Society book due to be published in autumn 2015.

This year’s book was announced in November 2014—a collection of ghost stories introduced by Susan Hill, the best-selling author of novels including The Woman in Black. Hill will also be the guest judge in this year's competition helping to select the winning illustrator. The competition is still open for those wishing to take part; participants must submit entries via the House of Illustration website before 9am on the 19th January.  The longlist will be announced on 3 February 2015, with the winner and five runners-up revealed at an exclusive ceremony held on 19 February 2015 at House of Illustration, Kings Cross. In addition, an exhibition at House of Illustration will showcase selected entries.

Since its launch in 2011, the competition has provided a platform for both emerging and established illustrators to demonstrate their outstanding skills. The inaugural winner, Matthew Richardson, who triumphed with his illustrations for Albert Camus’ The Outsider, has since gone on to great things, including winning a prestigious V&A Illustration Award for his binding design for The Outsider. He has won commissions from ENO and BBC Music, and was recently engaged by The Folio Society to work on another book, In Praise of Folly. 

The competition has also helped to raise the profile of the runners-up. Ben Jones, a runner-up in 2012, comments on how the BIC has helped him: ‘The competition has offered me some great opportunities and experiences within my illustration career. Since being a runner-up, I have gone on to work for the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Guardian and BBC History Magazine. I was also commissioned by The Folio Society to illustrate their edition of Anthony Burgess’s A Clockwork Orange—a dream job.’

In 2014, Sean McSorley won the competition with his haunting illustrations for Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. McSorley, who joins the judging panel for this year’s competition, says: ‘Having my work accompany a real literary classic and seeing the finished book on the shelf alongside the other Folio editions is a wonderful experience, and fulfilled an ambition I’ve had since I first started to pursue illustration.’

The Book Illustration Competition is a partnership between House of Illustration and The Folio Society. The annual international competition is open to illustrators over the age of 18 not previously published by The Folio Society, both student and professional. The winner will receive a prestigious Folio Society commission worth £5,000. Five runners up will each receive £500.

For over 65 years, The Folio Society has been publishing beautiful illustrated editions of the world's greatest books. It believes that the literary content of a book should be matched by its physical form. With specially commissioned illustrations, many of its editions are further enhanced with introductions written by leading figures in their fields: novelists, journalists, academics, scientists and artists. Exceptional in content and craftsmanship, and maintaining the very highest standards of fine book production, Folio Society editions last for generations. www.foliosociety.com

House of Illustration is a vibrant arts charity, passionate about promoting the work of both emerging talent and established artists—past and present, British and international.

In July 2014 House of Illustration opened the doors to the world’s first dedicated home for illustration at the heart of the King's Cross regeneration area. Its new gallery and education studio is a major new arts space, with an accessible and exciting creative programme of exhibitions, talks and events. House of Illustration is the place to see, learn about and enjoy all forms of illustration, from adverts to animation, picture books to political cartoons and scientific drawings to fashion design. houseofillustration.org.uk <http://www.houseofillustration.org.uk/> 2 Granary Square, King's Cross, London N1C 4BH. @illustrationHQ 
Registered Charity number 1095210

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