Ireland's Laureate na nÓg P.J. Lynch

Laureate na nÓg, Ireland’s fourth laureate for children’s literature 2017 author and illustrator P.J. Lynch visited The Verbal Arts Centre. During his visit he gave a class of Oakgrove Intergrated Primary School children a workshop in drawing with chalk and charcoal.

Picture for blog story Ireland's Laureate na nÓg P.J. Lynch

P.J. Lynch was born in Belfast and has illustrated over 20 beautiful books. PJ is two times winner of the prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal, first for The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey (Walker Books) written by Susan Wojciechowski and again for When Jessie Came Across the Sea written by Amy Hest. He’s also been awarded the Christopher medal (which is massive in the US) three times. P.J. is a big lover of folklore and traditional stories so legends and fairy tales have been a recurring subject of his work.

Here are P.J. Lynch's thought's on his visit to The Verbal Arts Centre.

"The Verbal Arts Centre is a super venue, with the brilliant hard-working staff!

During some spare time, I walk around the city’s impressive old walls. Derry is one of the finest examples of walled cities in Europe. If I was somewhere in Italy I would be imagining battles and adventures happening here, but these great big, beautiful walls make me think of Trump and his ilk, and I wonder what it is in human nature that makes some of us so keen to keep people divided. I am looking forward to reading Nicola Pierce’s widely praised book Behind the Walls about the siege of Derry in 1688/89. Maybe I will find some answers there.

My next session with the children at the Verbal Arts is hectic. There are two different schools in the group, and we are all so busy drawing nobody is even thinking about walls or religion.

Ghosts and pirates are a lot more fun!"

RTE Culture feature story on his first visit to Northern Ireland as Laureate na nÓg:

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