(STOCKBRIDGE, Mass.) – Norman Rockwell Museum has named illustrator David Macaulay as 2011-2012 Artist Laureate. An award-winning author and artist whose work has helped readers better understand the workings of everything from simple gadgets to monumental structures, Macaulay employs pictures and words to reveal the secret lives of buildings, the wonders of the human body, and the common sense in the design of everyday things. Coincidentally, Macaulay’s work is on display in this week’s cover of the New Yorker magazine. The award will be presented to the artist during a special ceremony to be held at the museum on Saturday, September 24, 2011, at 5:30 p.m, followed by a special award dinner. A collection of Macaulay’s work is currently on display at the museum, including the New Yorker cover.
David Macaulay inspires discovery by demystifying the complexities of our world while celebrating the places the imagination takes us when we least expect it. Transcending the boundaries of time, culture, and geography, the artist’s award-winning books reveal his lifelong love of history, and are beloved by readers throughout the world.
A Caldecott Medalist and recipient of a prestigious MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship, he is perhaps best known for his international bestseller, The Way Things Work, but his many titles include Cathedral, City, Castle, Pyramid, Mill, Underground, Unbuilding, Mosque, Ship, and The Way We Work. The artist’s light-hearted picture books include Rome Antics, Shortcut, and Black and White.
Macaulay’s work can be seen on this week’s cover of the New Yorker — a humorous look at the current state of the United States Postal Service. The striking cover features a New York City tour bus passing by the city’s main post office, where a man on a scaffolding is adding additional comments to the building’s famous inscription. On the New Yorker’s website, Macaulay explains that “Every time I come out of Penn Station, I look at that post office with the wonderful phrase ‘Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds…’ I just saw these empty spaces at the end of the building and I thought, ‘Well at least they have space to make corrections.”
Macaulay was the subject of Norman Rockwell Museum’s 2004 exhibition Building Books: The Art of David Macaulay, which celebrated the art of one of America’s foremost visual storytellers.
The Norman Rockwell Museum’s Rockwell Center for American Visual Studies bestows the commendation of Artist Laureate to honor the contributions of outstanding visual artists whose art has set the standard in their field, and whose exceptional dedication to the Museum and its mission has guided and advanced the work on the institution.