Since 2019, Bologna Children’s Book Fair is partner of the four-year project “Mapping - A map on the aesthetics of performing arts for early years”, an artistic research venture, supported by the European Union, looking at the relationship between early childhood (children from zero to 6 years) and the performing arts.

"Mapping" is proposed as an experimental mapping project, a field research involving performers, academics, and illustrators for children’s book entrusted with the task of interpreting the concept of children- spectators of a performative event (theater, dance, music, circus, etc.), in which the performer meets a young audience.
In the framework of the project, which involves 18 partners from 17 countries, including La Baracca - Testoni Ragazzi, Theater for Youth of the city of Bologna, the aim of Bologna Children’s Book Fair’s activities is creating an interaction between the performing arts and the world of illustration and literature for early childhood.

The project hosts each year a selection of illustrators participating in the “Children-Spectators” competition. In 2023, a final show will gather a selection of all the works presented over the project. Illustrators’ art will be shown together with four guest international artists: Katsumi Komagata (Japan), Manuel Marsol (Spain), Fabian Negrin (Argentina), and Klaas Verplancke (Belgium).

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