A feast of stories this weekend – and not a word in sight. The Silent Books exhibition has arrived in Ireland on the latest leg of its world tour.
The gorgeous collection of more than 100 wordless picture books came together in 2012, when IBBY International set up a library on the Italian island of Lampedusa for the thousands of refugees arriving from Africa and the Middle East www.ibby.org. The books come from 23 countries including Australia, Thailand, Turkey, Pakistan and Mexico.
IBBY Ireland is launching Silent Books in Ballyroan library, South Dublin, this Saturday www.ibbyireland.com. Setting up the exhibition, we’ve met some fantastic tales: some in colour, some black and white; some left to right, some (Iranian) the other way; some pop-ups and pull-outs, some build-it-yourselves.
There’s a Korean polar bear who escapes his cage and follows a balloon through the city, up a cloud staircase and back to his Arctic home (The Polar Bear by Mi-Jung Lee).
There’s the fabulously colourful and clever Hamin va Hamaan (Both This And That) by Ali Khodaee from Iran, in which the page splits to reveal different animals.
And my favourite, so far, Mon Lion by Mandana Sadat from France, the story of a scary, playful, protective friendship that grows between a boy and a lion.
All are welcome to the launch in Ballyroan library at 2pm this Saturday 8th April with workshops by author-illustrators Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick and Tatyana Feeney. Come and be wowed beyond words.