This season, I am thankful for Joan Vigliotta.
Why? Because, several years ago, she created a small book group that would focus on illustration in children's literature, a mutual love of each of the members. (And, mostly of course, I am thankful because she is a magnificent human being and treasured friend.)
When our book group meets, Joan offers unto us exquisite tours of heavenly work. Many times, we focus on one illustrator. Other times, we switch course a bit. Every single meeting, thanks to Joan, is rife with untold riches. We have studied the work of Edward Ardizzone, the de Brunhoffs, Anno, Peter Sis, Trina Schart Hyman, M. B. Goffstein, the Dillons...the list goes on and on, and is too wonderful to be able to recount in it's true magnificence.
[Joan and I became good friends, in large part, through a shared love of the works of - among others - Arthur Rackham and Hilary Knight, M. F. K. Fisher and Maira Kalman...at least, that's my version of the story. Joanie has a better memory than almost anybody, and may remember more...]
So thank you, Joan, for your wonderful vision. Again. And for the priceless moments we have all spent with your magnificent trove of books and pictures and magicthings, surrounded by a wealth of art and love.
For this, I have great gratitude. Many blessings on this holiday, and always.