A November Afternoon at the Mazza Museum

A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, Jen Corace spends a lot of time in thought. She likes to stare and think and think and stare and that kind of thought and vision really show in her work. She and her brother thought (and maybe stared at one another?) long enough to create a new game based on the rules of Edwardian society, Lords and Ladies.

A tiny picture of peas in her portfolio led Chronicle books to contact her to illustrate Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Little Pea, the story of a pea who hates candy. Those books were followed by Little Hoot and Little Oink.

Jen loves books about sleeping and the color blue.

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She has illustrated fairy tales by Cynthia Rylant as well as two new books, I Hatched by Jill Esbaum and Mac Barnett’s Telephone.

Jen has recently reintroduced herself to adult art with two gallery solo shows this year. She hopes to write her own children’s books in the future.

We hope she will.

And, now…

I wish you were here.

Because only by being here could you truly experience what’s happening in this room.

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Ashley Bryan has taken the stage. And the room is filled with rhythm.

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And rhyme. And beat. And melody.

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And the lilting sound of hundred of voices united in the poetry of Langston Hughes and Nikki Giovanni and Eloise Greenfield.

And Ashley Bryan, who has himself preserved stories of African oral tradition in the most beautiful books.

I wish you were here.

Because I can tell you what’s happening. But no writer, no matter how good, could make you feel the energy in this room right now. The energy that comes from word and voice and art …

 I wish you were here.

Think about it. Next time.

Be here at the Mazza Weekend or Summer Conference. You’ll never regret having been in the room.

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