Never Abandon Imagination: The Fantastical Art of Tony DiTerlizzi

November 11, 2017 to May 28, 2018

“He stands alone as a creator of worlds and a weaver of tales.”
— Guillermo del Toro

Never Abandon Imagination: The Fantastical Art of Tony DiTerlizzi, an exhibition of works by the #1 New York Times bestselling author/illustrator, is  on view at the Norman Rockwell Museum from November 11, 2017 through May 28, 2018.

Known for his multi-million bestselling book series The Spiderwick Chronicles, DiTerlizzi is celebrated the world over for his images of such fantasy creatures as fairies, trolls, sprites, and goblins.

Sponsored in part by:

The Keator GroupPittsfield Cooperative Bank

Additional support provided by Simon & Schuster, Disney Publishing Worldwide, Gotham Group, The Max & Victoria Dreyfus Foundation, and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation. Media sponsor: WGBY Public Television

Never Abandon Imagination showcases over 200 original paintings and drawings, starting from DiTerlizzi’s work in tabletop games, such as Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: The Gathering, to his many imaginative children’s books, in addition to early artwork from his childhood and college years. The exhibition highlights the artist’s influences and artistic process.

Just as his early work on Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: The Gathering is treasured by devoted fans of the gaming genre, DiTerlizzi’s award-winning books—such as The Spiderwick Chronicles; Kenny and the Dragon; The Spider and the Fly; The Story of Diva and Flea, and The WondLa Trilogy—have inspired a new generation of young readers.

DiTerlizzi has influenced fans and fellow creators alike. “Tony’s work has a distinct flair, a love for monsters if you will,” notes filmmaker Guillermo del Toro. “His creatures have the charm of [Jim] Henson or [Arthur] Rackham but they carry with them hints of their own ecosystem. He stands alone as a creator of worlds and a weaver of tales.”

With an artistic style influenced by legendary illustrators Norman Rockwell, Arthur Rackham, and Brian Froud, DiTerlizzi’s exhibition shows how those visionaries shaped his own magical tales. The exhibit has been organized by the Norman Rockwell Museum’s Jesse Kowalski, who adds that the Museum is “proud to present the work of this superb illustrator, who is keeping this cherished artistic tradition alive.”

An exhibition opening for Never Abandon Imagination was held at the Museum with a special appearance and book-signing by Tony DiTerlizzi. School vacation week and additional family programming will explore DiTerlizzi’s use of imagination in narrative art.


Self portrait Illustration from Ted. 2001. Gouache on bristol board.

New York Times bestselling author and illustrator Tony DiTerlizzi has been creating books for nearly two decades. From his fanciful picture books such as The Spider & The Fly (a Caldecott Honor book), to chapter books like Kenny and The Dragon and the WondLa trilogy, DiTerlizzi imbues his stories with rich imagination. With Holly Black, he created the middle-grade series, The Spiderwick Chronicles, which has sold millions of copies, been adapted into a successful feature film, and translated for more than 30 countries. Recently, he teamed up with Lucasfilm to retell the original Star Wars trilogy as a picture book and collaborated with Mo Willems for the bestselling chapter book The Story of Diva & Flea.

DiTerlizzi is also the author and illustrator of Jimmy Zangwow’s Out-of-this-World Moon Pie Adventure, as well as the Zena Sutherland Award winning Ted. His brilliantly cinematic version of Mary Howitt’s classic The Spider and The Fly earned the artist his second Zena Sutherland Award before receiving his Caldecott Honor in 2003. Mr. DiTerlizzi’s art has graced the book covers of such well-known fantasy writers as J. R. R. Tolkien, Anne McCaffrey, and Jane Yolen. He made his illustration debut contributing to Wizard of the Coast’s iconic games Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: The Gathering.

Believing in the healing power of stories, DiTerlizzi is a Global Ambassador for the Starlight Foundation and has held author events for children in hospitals all over the world. He serves as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.

Learn more at:

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Spiderwick, 2003. Cover illustration for The Spiderwick Chronicles: The Seeing Stone, 2003.
“Twilight Traveler” cover of Dragon magazine, 1999. Gouache on bristol board.

Interior illustration from The AD&D Planescape Monstrous Compendium II, 1995. Pen and colored ink with airbrush.

“The Littlest Artist” cover of Spider magazine, 2002. Gouache on bristol board.
Tiefling -
“Portrait of a Young Tiefling” interior illustration from Realms: The RPG Art of Tony DiTerlizzi, 2015. Gouache on bristol board.
“A Golden Afternoon” cover of Dragon magazine, 1997. Gouache on bristol board.
“Mr. Moon” from Jimmy Zangwow’s Out-of-this-World Moon Pie Adventure, 2000. Gouache on bristol board.
“Goblin Warbuggy” from the Magic: The Gathering deck, Urza’s Saga, 1998. Gouache on bristol board.
Andy Warhol
“North American Griffin” from Arthur Spiderwick’s Field Guide to the Fantastical World Around You, 2005. Gouache on bristol board.


There are no upcoming events at this time.



Tony DiTerlizzi Exhibition Catalog
Availability: In stock
Price: $20.00


Upcoming Venues

The Mint Museum
Charlotte, North Carolina
June 22, 2019 – October 6, 2019

Past Venues

Norman Rockwell Museum
Stockbridge, MA
November 11, 2017 to May 28, 2018

Host this Exhibition

Contact Information:

Mary Melius
Manager of Traveling Exhibitions


Complete Facts
Fee:For eight to twelve week exhibition period
Contents:Approximately 100 original artworks; paintings; sketches; artifacts/personal memorabilia; video interview; exhibition catalogue; introductory and informational panels; and object/extended identification labels
Security:High. All works must be within sight of a trained security officer/staff member at all times during public hours.
Environment:Light level -18 to 22 foot candles for paintings and 5 to 7 foot candles for works on paper and other light restricted objects. Humidity -50% plus or minus 5% and temperature 68 – 72 degrees, no direct sunlight and no direct contact with light fixtures or heating, air conditioning, ventilation, or electrical outlets
Space Requirements:approx. 3500 square feet
Shipping:Air ride, Climate controlled
Insurance:All risk fine arts, wall to wall
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