This is a post-modern fairy tale--grotesque and wild-- about an insecure bride, whose wedding date was set by a fortune teller before she had even found a groom. It takes place during two eventful days filled with love and envy, hope and disappointment. Madness, freedom, happiness, cruelty, and irony are all mixed together.
When the up-coming wedding still has no groom, the focus shifts to the intense and explosive relationship between mother and daughter, and all the tension builds around the wedding dresses. The struggle between mother and daughter is both hilarious and heart-breaking, and the brilliant illustrations bring out the best – and the worst of the characters. A bitter-sweet and funny tale.
The book is designed as a two-way concertina--one for each day--and is printed in a limited edition of 1000 copies, collated by hand. It has won a silver medal at the annual Competition of the American Illustrators’ Union.
Eitan Eloa is a graphic designer and illustrator. He received the Israel Museum Children's book illustration Award (2016), the Israeli Design Award (2015) and two silver medals in the special format category of the Society of Illustrations, New York (2015; 2016).
The two characters almost compete with each other for the most ridiculous title. Their struggle is fought on surreal terrain, producing an uncomfortable yet full of giggles reading experience. The book is spectacular in its colorfulness and vitality. The font, written in the illustrator's handwriting, curly and full of humanity, fits well into the ironic language. The important precedent of "bridal gowns" lies in the fact that the book does not submit to the technical constraints of the medium.
The Brides Dresses by Shoham Smith and Eitan Eloa provides a wild and brilliant partnership between text and illustration.
Eloa, whose illustrations respond to the text, intensifies the craziness contained in the plot, giving Smith’s characters a contemporary cultural interpretation, weaving around them associative worlds that tie in with familiar fairy tales, and creating an illustrative sequence with an autonomous presence in a format that explodes out of the limitations of the book. The grotesque becomes captivating.
I scrutinized the words and the pictures down to the smallest details. I did not want to miss anything. Each page is full of tiny details, and this is a consummate visual experience.
Tzipi Levin, Culture Blog