Robert Ingpen receives the CBCA Lifetime Achievement Award


To celebrate the amazing achievement of the CBCA’s 70th Book of the Year Awards, The CBCA Lifetime Achievement Award was presented at the Book of the Year Presentation in Sydney on 19 August. This special award recognises a long-standing contribution by an Australian citizen to Australian children’s books and a lifetime commitment to Australian readers.


Robert Ingpen’s widely acclaimed books and diverse artistic endeavours and achievements have created a lasting legacy for Australian readers.

Robert Ingpen is presented with his Lifetime Achievement Award by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove

Robert Ingpen is presented with his Lifetime Achievement Award by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove


Robert Ingpen is a hugely successful illustrator on the international scene. He has written or illustrated more than 100 published books. These include children’s picture books and stories for all ages. His non-fiction books mostly relate to history, conservation, environment and health issues. His achievements include:

  • For his services to Australian literature he was awarded an AM.
  • He is the only Australian (with Patricia Wrightson in 1986) to have received the internationally prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award.
  • the design of many Australian postage stamps, as well as the Northern Territory flag and coat of arms.
  • the creation of a number of public murals in Geelong, Melbourne, Canberra and the Gold Coast.
  • the design of bronze statues, which include the Poppykettle Fountain in the Geelong Steam Packet Gardens, and the bronze doors to the Melbourne Cricket Club.
  • the design and working drawings for a tapestry, which was woven by The Victorian Tapestry Workshop, to celebrate the 150 years of the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
  • In 1982 Robert Ingpen designed the Dromkeen Medal for the Governors of the Courtney Oldmeadow Children’s Literature Foundation. The Dromkeen Medal is awarded annually to Australians in recognition of contributions to children’s literature and Robert received it himself in 1989 for his own work in the field.
  • He was illustrator for the centenary editions of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan and Wendy and Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows for which he bases characterisations on contemporary figures and personalities. This grew into an impressive series of classics (published by Palazzo) which will culminate with the 150th anniversary edition of Alice Through the Looking Glass in 2016.
  • In 2007 Robert illustrated a picture book by Liz Lofthouse called Ziba Came on a Boat, which was nominated for many Australian awards including the CBCA Awards and the WA Premier’s Book Awards.
  • In 2015 Tea and Sugar Christmas was chosen as an Honour Book in the CBCA Eve Pownall Category.
  • Storm Boy (written by Colin Thiele and illustrated by Robert Ingpen) is an enduring classic which is still in print.

Note: It is appropriate for this award to be presented to Robert Ingpen at the 2016 CBCA Awards presentation. He is celebrating his 80th birthday in October this year. A book will be published by the National Library, to be called Wonderlands – a lavishly illustrated book highlighting his illustration art.

Robert Ingpen is congratulated by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove

Robert Ingpen is congratulated by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove

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