Nonny Hogrogian

Obituary: Nonny Hogrogian, Award-Winning Children’s Author, Illustrator

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Nonny Hogrogian, a Caldecott Award-winning children’s book illustrator died on May 9, 2024, two days after her 92nd birthday.

She never lost her love of folk and fairy tales, poetry, fantasy and stories when she reached adulthood.

Hogrogian was born in New York City on May 7, 1932, to parents born in Armenia. Both parents were amateur painters.

Hogrogian earned a B.A. in Fine Arts  from Hunter College in 1953. She then started working as a book designer at Thomas Y. Crowell Co. She then studied with Antonio Frasconi and Hodaka Yoshida and studied art at the New School.

In 1960, Crowell published her first works in the book, King of the Kerry Fair, by Nicolete Meredith, which Hogrogian illustrated with woodcuts. Subsequently, she has worked as a designer at Holt and Scribner’s and as a freelance illustrator.

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In 1971 Hogrogian married David Kherdian, a writer and editor. For two years they lived in Lyme Center, where he was the state “poet-in-the-schools.” She illustrated some of his poetic anthologies and other works for publication.

Hogrogian won the Caldecott Medal for illustration in 1966 and 1972. The American Library Association award annually recognizes the previous year’s “most distinguished American picture book for children.” The two books for which she won were One Fine Day, which she both wrote and illustrated, and Always Room for One More by Sorche Nic Leodhas. The former is based on an old Armenian story, in which after an old woman cuts off his tail when he steals her milk, a fox must go through a long series of transactions before she will sew it back on again. Always Room for One More is based on a Scottish folk song in which generosity is encouraged.

Hogrogian received a Caldecott Honor in 1977 for The Contest, another story she retold and illustrated.

She illustrated a children’s book Kherdian wrote in 2019, called The Animal, about a visitor to earth from a distant galaxy, who is mesmerized by the beauty of the planet’s flora and fauna.Nonny Ho

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