The Tolkien Calendar 2011 features 13 paintings by the artist Cor Blok. Cor Blok is the only artist ever to have met JRR Tolkien, and the only artist Tolkien admired enough to purchase some of his work. The paintings are inspired by Tolkien’s classic masterpiece, The Lord of the Rings and were completed during the early 1960s when the young artist was attempting to create a Bayeux tapestry approach to illustrating this monumental book. Many of this paintings included here have never been seen before. This delightful collection of scenes takes the reader on a unique journey through the beauty and drama of Middle-earth. It represents a truly charming addition to the series of official calendars by a gifted artist, and promises to be a memorable calendar for fans.

While it isn’t exactly “news” it will be of a lot of interest to those who haven’t seen the 2011 version of the annual Tolkien calendar that Cor Blok is next year’s artist.

Blok is the only Tolkien artist living who met J.R.R. Tolkien in person and the English professor bought two paintings from the Dutch professor (history of art) and was given a third as a gift. Blok’s work, produced 50 years ago, is a definite departure from the more familiar works many fans are used to. He reportedly produced over 100 illustrations. You can pre-order it here and you can read a recent interview with Blok here. It is scheduled to be available in July.