In 2013, the Children’s Book Guild of Washington D.C. Nonfiction Award will occupy not one but two mantels. Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan—collaborators for more than two decades and friends since ten years before that—accepted the prestigious 36th annual award at the Guild's event on April 20th.


As art imitates life, their work celebrates art. Among their critically acclaimed titles:
  • Ballet for Martha: Making Appalachian Spring, Orbis Pictus Award winner and Sibert Honor title (both nonfiction honors)
  • Action Jackson, Sibert Honor title
  • Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Through the Gates and Beyond

Ballet for MarthaAction Jackson

Greenberg and Jordan’s books showcase art in all its dazzling diversity. By shining natural light on topics as varied as dance, painting, and installation, the author duo opens young minds to the idea that art is not only what hangs on museum walls.

“Whether the subject is Frank O. Gehry’s impossibly curvy titanium buildings, Chuck Close’s puzzling self-portraits, or the range of contemporary American sculpture, these authors recognize the ‘drop-everything-and-look’ quality that modern art elicits from all ages,” says Wendy Lukehart, chair of the nonfiction award committee and Youth Collections Coordinator at the D.C. Public Library.

The committee delighted in the pair’s extensive research, their lively writing, and the dynamic design of their books. Because Greenberg and Jordan frequently present artists in their own words, their books achieve a compelling level of authenticity both visually and textually.

“Jan and Sandra set the standard,” says Brian Floca, artist of Ballet for Martha. “They take their subjects seriously and their readers seriously. They make books that give a deep access to art and artists. For some young people, surely, Jan and Sandra’s books will be the first exposure not just to serious art, but to the idea of taking art seriously.”

Inside the Remarkable Partnership of Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan
by Catherine Reef

To read more about the winners, see Inside the Remarkable Partnership of Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan by Catherine Reef.

The awards ceremony luncheon will take place in Washington D.C. on Saturday, April 20, 2013. It’s an invitation to the dance…of the spirit.



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