The Giverny Award is an annual children's science picture book award established in 1998 by Dr. Jim Wandersee and Dr. Elisabeth E. Schussler who was at that time affiliated with the 15º Laboratory at Louisiana State University.
The 15º Laboratory performs research on visual cognition in biology, visual approaches to learning biology, and the graphic represention of biological knowledge.
The name of the Giverny Award alludes to the renowned French village that provides the site, setting, and inspiration for the famous impressionist paintings that are synonymous with what we call "visual capture and explanation of the floral esthetic experience."
We think these paintings represent the visual inverse of humans' plant blindness (a current cause celebre of the Laboratory).
These images allowed humankind to see plant life in new ways--to see light, to see air, to see water--to see and experience vivid, vibrant plant life outdoors--as if viewers were really there. The viewer can contemplate populations of plants in breathtakingly natural light. Like insects, we are to drawn into these lifelike visualizations of floral panoramas--just as we hope children are drawn to the science picture books we choose to receive our award.
Note that the name "Giverny" is, in our minds, not only emblematic of the latent connection between art and science, but also of visual capture, visual explanation, and visual exemplification of captivating botanical views of the world.
Note: The Giverny Award solely represents the views of the 15º Laboratory's Award Selection Committee, and no other endorsements by any other entity, including LSU, are implied nor should be assumed.
The Giverny Award Criteria
This singular annual award is bestowed to the author and to the illustrator of the chosen book.
The book must be a children's science picture book written in the English language and published within five years of the award date. These books typically have ~ 32 pages and serve children between ages 4-8.
The book must teach its young reader at least one important scientific principle well, or encourage the reader toward specific science-related attitudes, pursuits, or inquiries.
The book's artwork, illustrations, photographs, or graphics must work in harmony with the text to tell an important story well.
The text must have a story with a plot and characters.
All other factors being equal, books about plants and/or plant science or biology will have preference. However, books on geobiology topics are also considered and have been chosen.
A book must be published in the English language to be eligible, but the award is international in scope.
The panel of judges is comprised soley of science educators and scientists.
Contact information: Prof. Renee Clary ..........................................firstname.lastname@example.org
Recognition 1. Winning books are distinguished with a special gold award seal designed especially for the Lab by the renowned children's author-illustrator, Molly Bang.
2. The author and the illustrator each receive a distinctive award plaque, plus the right to reproduce and use the seals on their winning book.
3. The award is announced on the 15º Laboratory web site in each year in mid-April.
4. All of the award winners, since award's inception, are recognized on this web site.
Submission Deadline March 1st (Books received after March 1st will be considered for the following year's Giverny Award.)
The Giverny Award Committee does its own searching for potential award-worthy books, year-round, but to make certain a particular book is not inadvertently overlooked, readers, authors, or publishers may mail a copy of an advertisement or brochure or an actual copy for any eligible book to:
The Giverny Award Committee c/o Prof. Renee Clary Mississippi State Dept. of Geosciences, Box 5448, Mississippi State, MS 39762