Cneut, Carll 1969-
Cneut, Carll 1969-
Born August 1, 1969, in Belgium. Education: Attended Saint-Lucas Arts School (Ghent, Belgium), degree (graphic design).
Home and office—Ghent, Belgium.
Illustrator, writer, and costume designer. Previously worked as an art director for a publicity agency.
Honorable mention, Book Peacock award, 1998, for Straatje zonder eind; selection Gigant Fiaminghi, for Varkentjes van Marsepein; Jonge Gouden Uil longlist, 2000, and Children's and Youth Jury shortlist, Prix Octogones nomination, and Flemish Children and Youth Jury shortlist, all 2001, all for Heksenfee; honorable mention, Bologna Ragazzi awards, 2001, for Woeste Mie; Boekenpauw award, 2000, and Prix Enfantaisie shortlist, 2002, both for Willy; Prix Octogones, and Bookfeather award, both 2002, and Children's and Youth Jury shortlist, 2003, all for Roodgeelzwartwit; Jonge Gouden Uil longlist, 2003, for The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf.
Het ongeloofijk liefesverhaal van Heer Morf, De Eenhoorn (Belgium), 2002, translated as The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf, Clarion (New York, NY), 2003.
Geert De Kockere, Varkenjes van Marsepein, [Belgium], 1996.
Brigitte Minne, Heksenfee (title means "Witchfairy"), De Eenhoorn (Belgium), 1999.
Geert De Kockere, Willy, De Eenhoorn (Belgium), 1999.
Geert De Kockere, Woeste Mie, De Eenhoorn (Belgium), 2000.
Brigitte Minne, Roodgeelzwartwit (title means "Redyellowblackwhite"), Dee Eenhoorn (Belgium), 2001.
Malachy Doyle, Antonio on the Other Side of the World, Getting Smaller, Candlewick (Cambridge, MA), 2003.
Carl Norac, Un sécret pour Grandir, Pastel (Paris, France), 2003.
Sam Swope, Jack and the Seven Deadly Giants, Farrar, Straus & Giroux (New York, NY), 2004.
Carl Norac, Coeur de papier (title means "A Paper Heart"), Pastel (Paris, France), 2004.
Carl Norac, O monster, eet me niet op, De Eenhoorn (Belgium), 2006, translated as Monster, Don't Eat Me!, Groundwood (New York, NY), 2007.
Marilyn Singer, City Lullaby, Clarion (New York, NY), 2007.
Illustrator of several books published in Belgium.
Belgian illustrator Carll Cneut grew up in a small village on the border of France and Belgium. From an early age, Cneut knew he wanted to be an artist, and one of his goals after graduating from the Saint-Lucas Arts School in Ghent, Belgium, was to see his art reproduced in a children's book published in the United States. Beginning his career as art director for an advertising agency, he did his first book illustration project in 1996. Varkenjes van Marsepein, a collaboration with Flemish writer Geert De Kockere, proved popular and marked the start of Cneut's illustration career. Cneut and De Kockere gained further recognition with Willy, which won the Boekenpauw award in 2000.
Before Cneut decided on a career in illustration, he considered becoming a circus artist, and his first original, self-illustrated picture book features a circus theme.
First published in Belgium in 2002, The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf is the tale of a circus dog searching for a soul mate. The high-wire terrier cannot seem to find a good match, although he tries to make friends with a cat, an owl, a swallow, and a wolf. Ultimately, it is a flea that is able to keep the dog good company. "It is the delightfully offbeat acrylic-and-pastel illustrations that distinguish this picture book," wrote Teri Markson and Stephen Samuel in a School Library Journal review of the book. Several other critics deemed Cneut's artwork stronger than his story. The "densely textured acrylic-and-pastel illustrations outshine the wordy exposition," wrote a contributor to Publishers Weekly, in a review of The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf, and a Kirkus Reviews contributor wrote that "what makes this unique is the style of illustration." In contrast, Gillian Engberg commented in Booklist on the author/illustrator's "brief, simple language."
Other picture books featuring Cneut's illustration include Antonio on the Other Side of the World, a book by Malachy Doyle that reveals "a world filled with circus-like energy and whimsy," according to a Publishers Weekly critic. Abby Nolan wrote in Booklist that the illustrations here "offer up delectable details and a playful sense of scale." In Jack and the Seven Deadly Giants, "Cneut's wild illustrations … have the same off-kilter spirit" as his work in Antonio on the Other Side of the World, according to Nolan, while his work for Carl Norac's Monster, Don't Eat Me! includes illustrations described by Resource Links critic Michelle Gowans as "imaginative and expressive and filled with detail that elevates the book's overall appeal." Linda L. Walkins wrote in her School Library Journal review of Monster, Don't Eat Me! that the juxtaposition of deep tones against grayish background give the images "an oddly appealing sophistication."
Biographical and Critical Sources
Booklist, April 1, 2003, Gillian Engberg, review of The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf, p. 1400; October, 2003, Abby Nolan, review of Antonio on the Other Side of the World, Getting Smaller, p. 417; May 15, 2004, Abby Nolan, review of Jack and the Seven Deadly Giants, p. 1622; October 15, 2007, Gillian Engberg, review of City Lullaby, p. 51.
Horn Book, May-June, 2004, Christine M. Heppermann, review of Jack and the Seven Deadly Giants, p. 336; January-February, 2008, Sarah Ellis, review of City Lullaby, p. 79.
Kirkus Reviews, February 15, 2003, review of The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf, p. 302; October 1, 2007, review of City Lullaby.
Publishers Weekly, January 27, 2003, review of The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf, p. 258; September 29, 2003, review of Antonio on the Other Side of the World, p. 64; May 17, 2004, review of Jack and the Seven Deadly Giants, p. 50; November 12, 2007, review of City Lullaby, p. 54.
Resource Links, June, 2007, Michelle Gowans, review of Monster, Don't Eat Me!, p. 5.
School Library Journal, August, 2003, Teri Markson and Stephen Samuel Wise, review of The Amazing Love Story of Mr. Morf, p. 124; December, 2003, Catherine Threadgill, review of Antonio on the Other Side of the World, Getting Smaller, p. 112; May, 2004, Maria B. Salvadore, review of Jack and the Seven Deadly Giants, p. 125; August, 2007, Linda L. Walkins, review of Monster, Don't Eat Me!, p. 86.
Carll Cneut Home Page,http://users.telenet.be/carllcneut (February 14, 2009).
Children's Literature Web site,http://www.childrenslit.com/childrenslit/ (February 23, 2009), "Carl Cneut."