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International winners and nominations in children’s book art and literature of Jānis Baltvilks award 2020 are known

2020, July 10

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Latvian Council for Children and Youth Literature (LCCYL, IBBY Latvia) this summer, when more books have been read than in the previous years, continues approving the special achievements of children’s literature, thus presenting the international Jānis Baltvilks award already for the 16th time. The award is presented to the writer and illustrator in Latvia as well as the writer of any European country whose work has been translated into Latvian and the translator of this work. The joint-stock company “Latvijas Valsts meži” has been awarding already for the sixth year the special debut prize “Jaunaudze” [Young forest stand].

This year the jury consisting of the art researcher Austra Avotiņa, the literature researcher Ilze Stikāne, the expert on art education Ilze Kupča, the university lecturer of literature Aija Kalve and public representatives: the producer Valters Sīlis with his children, the manager of international projects on literature Ieva Hermansone with her daughter, has decided that the winners of the international Jānis Baltvilks award in 2020 are the writer Jurga Vilė, the illustrator Lina Itagaki and the translator Dace Meiere for the significant Lithuanian piece of children‘s literature “The Haiku of Siberia” [“Sibīrijas haiku”](publisher – Liels un mazs, 2020). The winners in illustration and writing, in their turn, will be announced during the festive ceremony on J. Baltvilks’ birthday on July 24, held in the Botanical gardens of the University of Latvia.


These are the candidates for Jānis Baltvilks award in children and youth literature:


  • Osvalds Zebris "Māra" (Dienas Grāmata, 2019)

  • Inese Zandere "Bērns, kas neiekrita" [The child who did not fall in] (Liels un mazs, 2019)

  • Juris Kronbergs "Laika bikses" [The trousers of time] (Liels un mazs, 2019)

  • Rasa Bugavičute-Pēce “Puika, kurš redzēja tumsā” [A boy who saw in the dark] (Latvijas Mediji, 2019)

  • Agnese Vanaga "Plastmasas huligāni" [Plastic hooligans] (Jāņa Rozes apgāds, 2019)

  • Arno Jundze “Šušnirks un pazemes bubuļi” [Shushnyrk and the underground bogymen] (Zvaigzne ABC, 2019)


Nominees for Jānis Baltvilks award in book art are:


  • Gundega Muzikante for her illustrations of Ieva Samauska’s book "Septiņas spārnotas atziņas mazā somiņā" [Seven inspired ideas in a small purse] (Zvaigzne ABC, 2019)

  • Ieva Jurjāne for her illustrations of Kārlis Ķezberis’ book "Takšelis Makšelis" [Dachsie Machsie] (Mansards, 2019)

  • Mārtiņš Zutis for his illustrations of Frīda Nilsone’s book "Ledusjūras pirāti" [The pirates of the Ice sea] (Jāņa Rozes apgāds, 2019)

  • Lote Vilma Vītiņa for her illustrations of the book "Dzejnieks un smarža" [The poet and the fragrance] (Aminori, 2019)

  • Andra Manfelde for her illustrations of the book “Ceriņslotas zīmējumi” [Drawings of the lilac broom] (Latvijas Mediji, 2019)


Candidates for the joint-stock company “Latvijas Valsts meži” award for the debut prize “Jaunaudze” in children’s literature and book art:


  • Dāvids Vikmanis and Marina Heniņa for the book "Roņpils: purva stāsts" [The Seal Castle: the story of a swamp] (Jāņa Rozes apgāds, 2019)

  • Viesturs Ķerus for the book “Meža meitene Maija” [The forest girl Maya] (Liels un mazs, 2019)

  • Kristīne Martinova for her illustrations of the book “Šušnirks un pazemes bubuļi” [Shushnyrk and the underground bogymen] (Zvaigzne ABC, 2019)


The objective of the award is to promote the development of the children’s literature in Latvia, its international recognition as well as to strengthen the tradition of book reading in Latvia. Latvian Council for Children and Youth Literature as the Latvian section of the International Board on Books for Young People, IBBY, continues purposefully to mark out the winners and to nominate them as candidates for the most prestigious awards for children’s literature in the world – Hans Christian Andersen award, Astrid Lindgren memorial award and IBBY Honour List. This way, people can learn about our most successful literary works in the largest book fairs, the most important international forums of children’s literature and data bases.

The international Jānis Baltvilks award in children’s literature and book art can take place owing to the supporters: Ministry of Culture, Republic of Latvia, International writers and translators’ house of Ventspils, the joint-stock company "Latvijas Valsts meži", National Library of Latvia, the Embassy of Lithuania in Riga, the Lithuanian IBBY branch as well as informative supporters: the joint-stock company "Latvijas Mediji" and the newspaper Latvijas Avīze, the internet magazine Satori.lv, portal DELFI, Latvijas Radio etc..

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