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Australian Women's Mirror, 12 February 1929, p.11
Margaret Horder Margaret Horder i(A51360 works by) (birth name: Margaret L'Anson Horder) (a.k.a. Margaret l'Anson Horder)
Born: Established: 1903 Sydney, New South Wales, ; Died: Ceased: 1978
Gender: Female
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Children's book illustrator Margaret Horder 'set new standards' in Australian book illustration. She trained at the Sydney Art School before working in London in the 1930s and 1940s where she began illustrating children's books for Oxford University Press. The first Australian book she illustrated was Nan Chauncy's They Found a Cave. Margaret Horder and her husband Arthur Freeman returned to Sydney in 1950. Horder continued her career in Australia illustrating books by many important Australian writers, including Joan Phipson and Patricia Wrightson and, from 1958-1969, illustrating for the NSW School Magazine. She established, for Angus & Robertson, the Blue Wren Books series for young children. She and her husband were active in the Children's Book Council of Australia and she designed the Book of the Year Award medal.

Horder described the role of an illustrator as needing to be 'a blend of creator, accompanist, interpreter and book designer...[and] be able to draw in odd spots...'. She worked closely with authors, and interpreted and expanded texts with her illustrations. Highly regarded for her collaborative skills and her 'splendid' design work, she 'made a significant contribution to children's literature, especially in Australia.'

Margaret Horder and her husband lived in Palma Majorca from late 1973. They returned to Sydney in 1977, the year before Margaret's death. (Sources: OXAC; Reading Time, July 1979, pp. 12-15).

Most Referenced Works


  • In an article by Bernice May, Horder explains her meticulous drawing methods in detail. She reveals her interest in amateur acting and costume design and discusses the writers and artists who inspire her. At the time of May's interview Horder was living with her friend and business partner, Betty Rogers, who also acted as a model for many of Horder's illustrations.

    Horder illustrated several works of fiction in The Australian Woman's Mirror including 'The Grey Dress' and Alys Brown's Tide-Rips.

    The article contains a portrait photograph of Margaret Horder.

    Source: May, Bernice, 'Margaret Horder', The Australian Woman's Mirror, v. 5, no. 12, 12 February, 1929, pp. 11, 45

Last amended 25 Aug 2017 13:22:33
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