MARCIA BROWN, a children’s book illustrator and a three-time winner of the Caldecott Medal was born on this date (d: 2015); One of the country’s most lauded picture-book artists, Ms. Brown illustrated dozens of titles. For some she also wrote the text; for many others she retold well-loved folk and fairy-tales, sometimes translating them from original French. She won the Caldecott Medal, presented by the American Library Association for the year’s best children’s book illustrations, in 1955 for “Cinderella” which she translated from Perrault’s version; in 1962 for “Once a Mouse” her retelling of a traditional fable from India; and in 1983 for “Shadow,” her translation and adaptation of “La Feticheuse,” a mystical poem by Blaise Dendrars. She is one of only two artists – the other is David Wiesner – to receive the Caldecott Medal three times.
She also illustrated six Caldecott Honor Books, as runners up are known, among them “The Steadfast Tin Soldier,” an adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen story; “Puss in Boots,” from Perrault and “Stone Soup.” In a speech, Ms. Brown wrote of her lifetime of telling stories, “The heritage of childhood is the sense of life bequeathed to it by the folk wisdom of the ages. It is a privilege to pass these truths on to children who have a right to the fullest expression we can give them.” Brown died at her home in Laguna Hills, California in April 2015 and is survived by her life companion, Janet Loranger.