IBBY with the Argentinean writer Isol

Friday 5 March 2021

IBBY Palestine arranged last month a meeting with the Argentinean ALMA winner writer and illustrator Isol, in cooperation with Tamer Institute. Tamer has hosted Isol for a series of very interesting training workshops.
Isol began by talking about her life: she studied fine arts at the university. Her father was a philosopher and painter and her mother a singer. She likes writing stories for children from the point of view of the child as if it is the child who is writing and not from her point of view.
Isol presented to the audience some of her stories; talked of their references, the pictures and drawings she likes. She said that she starts by making drawings of her stories in black and white then colored them.
She talked of her story: It’s Useful to have a Duck
It is a child who has a duck and he is speaking about it. What the duck does to him he puts it on his head, it scratches his ear, he plays with it and the same story has another story.
It’s useful to have a boy.
She is talking about the duck and its feelings and playing with the child. The story is like a file and not an ordinary book. It is an exciting and strange story. Isol depends in her drawings on strange and unusual shapes and it has madness and strangeness according to her opinion.
Then she talked about the current situation in Argentina and the present crisis. She said there are big publishing houses and others that are individual and private. Most writers write small and short stories and not novels. They count on funny caricatures which have philosophy. She mentioned an important writer called Borjesson, known Jorge Luis Borges who had written many short stories. (Many of his books are translated to Arabic)
She said they have distinguished artists. The current situation in Argentina is not good like before. The state does not spend a lot of money on education and health. There are many crises. In spite of this Isol says that they have a strong will to do things and be creative in spite of the difficult circumstances. We implement many cultural projects because people like culture and the painters and writers do not depend on their illustrations and writings but have other ordinary jobs for their living.
In spite of the difficult situation they do not back down.
The beneficial and exciting meeting ended with some questions and interesting discussion.

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