The Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition Is Coming Back

The China Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair (CCBF) is glad to announce that a new edition of its Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition is open to entries from 25 March to 28 June 2021.

The Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition is an international illustration contest held annually with the support of the Shanghai Press and Publication Administration. Since its creation in 2015, the competition has been providing a venue for emerging illustrators to showcase their talent. It aims to build bridges between them and children's publishers, both locally and globally. Following its uninterrupted expansion, the 2020 edition of the competition received a ground-breaking number of submissions from 2,238 artists hailing from 77 countries and territories.

The Golden Pinwheel is not merely a standalone competition—it is a comprehensive programme which includes an exhibition, an illustrated yearbook and a variety of promotional campaigns. It fosters an inspiring and nurturing environment where young illustrators and children's book artists from around the world find a platform to realise their visions.

2021 Golden Pinwheel Jury Announced

The Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition puts forward the works of 50 young artists who will be selected by five illustration specialists forming a Jury characterised by the plurality of their professional and cultural backgrounds. In 2021, the Golden Pinwheel Jury is formed by literary agent Debbie Bibo (USA/Italy), illustrator Huang Li (China), cartoonist and illustrator Ken Niimura (Spain/Japan), author and Cambridge School of Art professor Martin Salisbury (UK), and Ocean University of China professor Zhu Ziqiang (China).

The Jury will also be in charge of choosing the winners of the prizes and distinctions designed to give recognition to the most talented artists in the competition: the Golden Pinwheel Grand Award (rewarding the two most outstanding artworks—one from China and one from overseas), the Golden Pinwheel Special Mentions and the People's Choice Award.

The Golden Pinwheel Competition Opens New Horizons

Faithful to its core objective, the Golden Pinwheel Competition has shaped its prizes and distinctions on providing unique and distinctive opportunities to its participants. As an example, the winner of the Golden Pinwheel Grand Award (China) will be invited to attend the 2022 edition of the Bologna International Children’s Book Fair (BCBF), and the winner of the Golden Pinwheel Grand Award (International) will receive an invitation to the 2022 Shanghai International Children’s Book Fair (CCBF). Both invitations include a flight ticket and full accommodation, covered by the event organiser. The invited artists will have the opportunity to participate as guests in various illustration-related activities taking place at the fair.

In addition to the above and starting from the present edition of the competition, the Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition organising committee has entered into an “award-to-award” cooperation with the Astra International Picture Book Writing Contest, organised by Thinkingdom China, Astra Publishing House, minedition Switzerland and minedition France, in order to create the Golden Pinwheel Astra Award. This joint award aims to promote international collaboration and publication among picture book illustrators and writers. The Golden Pinwheel Astra Award is open to all 50 finalists of the Golden Pinwheel Competition and judged by an independent jury appointed by the sponsors of the Astra International Picture Book Writing Contest.

Beyond all this, one of the award-winners will be chosen by the CCBF Organising Committee to design the key visual of the 2022 edition of the book fair. This new image will be an integral part of the fair's visual communication for a whole year, including its use on our website, social media, gifts, and in advertisement campaigns. The 2021 CCBF key visual was designed by 2020 Special Mention winner Francesco Giustozzi (Italy), about whom you can learn more about here.

All 50 finalists will be featured in 2021 CCBF Golden Pinwheel Young Illustrators Competition Yearbook, which will also be presented at the 2021 Golden Pinwheel Illustration Exhibition held at the book fair from 19 to 21 November. Both the exhibition and the yearbook have established itself as a useful reference tool for publishers in search for fresh contents, occasioning an increasing number of contacts between content creators and the book industry.

In parallel, the Golden Pinwheel Organising Committee frequently receives collaboration proposals from brands and collectives aiming at building synergies between creative projects and the competition’s participants. Over the years, these spontaneous collaborations have resulted in the production of derivatives, stationary items and calendars offering added visibility to the finalists’ artworks