Le Nom de l'Arbre

I spent a good part of 2014 working on illustrations for Le Nom de l'Arbre which is finally out! This African fable retold with humor by Stéphanie Bénéteau takes place once upon a time when the animals spoke our language. When a great famine descends upon the land, the only source of food is a magical Tree who will offer his luscious fruit on the one condition that the animals call it by its long forgotten name. But no one can remember the name of the tree! The animals are doomed to starvation. So the hare, gazelle & lion-king in turn attempt to climb the Mountain to ask the Chief for the name of the Tree. No one succeeds, until the tortoise decides to try her luck. Everyone doubts her abilities, as she appears in every way dwarfed by the insolent hare, the agile gazelle and the King of the animals no less! But as the fable teaches us, appearances can be deceiving...

Elders hold a special place in this tale, which reminds us that each member of the community is precious and useful.

Here are my favorite spreads.