Spring 2017

The story in pictures

University of Minnesota Libraries is home to the Kerlan Collection, one of the leading repositories of original illustrations, process art, manuscripts, and first editions of work by children’s book authors and illustrators. Founded in the 1940s with a gift from Irvin Kerlan, ’33 M.D., it contains more than 18,000 works, many of which were donated by the writers and artists who created them. 

This year, curator Lisa Von Drasek, a former educator and school librarian, served on the committee that awards the Caldecott medal for the best American picture book for children. We asked her to share some of her favorite pieces from the collection—a task she likens to “asking a mother to pick her favorite child.”

See some of those favorite pieces below.

Watch a video to learn more about the story of the Kerlan Collection.