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We All Play Wins the 2022 Bull-Bransom Award

August 29, 2022

Jackson, WY: The National Museum of Wildlife Art (NMWA) is pleased to announce that Julie Flett has been awarded the 2022 Bull-Bransom Award for her illustrations in We All Play, also authored by Flett. This book celebrates playtime and the connection between children and the natural world. Flett brings this concept to life through her illustrations of birds who chase and chirp, bears who wiggle and wobble, whales who swim and squirt, owls who peek and peep, and a diverse group of kids who love to do the same, shouting: we play too! / kimêtawânaw mîna.

Flett says, “Play is so much a part of our lives, it’s immersive and I wanted to share something with kids that shines that light back on them. In We All Play, as pared down as the images are, you have a sense of the environment that the animals and kids are in, and they’re either playing with each other or within their surroundings or both. That felt important to the story. Probably

hardest part of the process was paring down the list of animals and all of the different ways kids play. And of course I wanted their play to reflect the play of the pages leading up to the refrain ‘we play too, kimêtawânaw mîna.’ There are so many images I would have loved to include.”

Flett is a Cree–Métis author, illustrator, and artist who has received numerous awards for her books, including two Governor General’s Awards, the American Indian Library Association Award, and the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award. Her books have been selected for Best of the Year lists by media outlets including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Publisher’s Weekly, The Horn Book, The Boston Globe, School Library Journal, The Globe and Mail, and Kirkus Reviews.

The Bull-Bransom Award is given annually to recognize excellence in the field of children’s book illustration with a focus on nature and wildlife. The award is named after Charles Livingston Bull and Paul Bransom, who were among the first and finest American artist-illustrators to specialize in wildlife subjects. Both had a tremendous impact on younger artists and both illustrated numerous children’s books. Museum Trustee Emerita and Bull-Bransom Award Founder, Lynn Friess started this annual award in 2010. The Museum will announce upcoming events and a visit by Flett to local elementary schools in spring 2023. Stay tuned for more information.