"Food for Thought"



Ashley Bryan: Freedom Over Me



Date: November 18, 2016
(No reservations accepted after noon on Thursday, Nov. 17)

Location: Birch Bay Village Inn

Time: Lunch 11:30, $11 each // Lecture noon - 1:00
Reservations required - call the ASC office 288-9500, or email: learn@acadiaseniorcollege.org

Ashley Bryan will discuss his new book “Freedom Over Me”. A decade ago, Ashley bought documents relating to an antebellum plantation. Included were 1829 tax records of the plantation including documents of 11 slaves. These included only age, sex and monetary value. In his latest endeavor, “Freedom Over Me”, Ashley Bryan offers a moving and powerful picture book that contrasts the monetary value of these slave with created images, life experiences and stories for each slave.

Ashley Bryan grew up in Harlem. He was educated at The Cooper Union art school and Columbia University. He became an illustrator. After serving in France during World War II, he returned to Europe on a Fulbright scholarship to study art in France and Germany.

Travels to Africa inspired him to retell and illustrate the African folktales for which he is so well known, including Beat the Story Drum, Pum-Pum (Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration) and Lion and Ostrich Chicks (Coretta Scott King Honor Book). His West Indian folk tale The Cat's Purr and his collections of Black American Spirituals, Walk Together Children and I'm Going To Sing, were ALA Notable Children's Books. In 1990 he received the Arbuthnot Prize, a prestigious international award given to recognize lifetime achievement in children's literature.

For many years he taught art at Dartmouth College. Now he travels all over the world captivating audiences of children and adults with his powerful storytelling and poetry presentations. When he is not traveling, he lives on Little Cranberry Island where he paints, makes puppets from objects he finds as he walks along the beach, creates stained glass windows of beach glass, and writes and illustrates books.

His recent books include Sing to the Sun (Parents' Choice Award, 1992), an illustrated collection of his own poetry, and Ashley Bryan's ABC of African-American Poetry (1997). Two video documentaries feature his life and work: a National Geographic production made in 1984 and American School Publishers' "Meet Ashley Bryan: Storyteller, Artist, Writer" made in 1992.