Everything is art. This month, Kim Tano and Madeline Shier, the children’s book buyers at Powell’s City of Books, handpick four books celebrating art around the world and the creativity and beauty as seen through the eyes of artists. Look for these titles at the Burnside, Hawthorne or Cedar Hills Powell’s locations.
Before They Were Artists features detailed biographies of great illustrators such as Maurice Sendak (Where the Wild Things Are), Yuyi Morales (Caldecott honor winner for Viva Frida) and Hayao Miyazaki (cofounder of Studio Ghibli). These are amazing inspirational biographies for current and future artists presented in a graphic novel style format by a local Portland author and illustrator. Great for ages 8 and up. $17.99.
Cloth Lullaby is a beautifully illustrated biography of world-renowned French-American artist Louise Bourgeois. Raised in France in the early 1900s, Louise explored nature and texture inspired by her family’s tapestry business. As an adult, she created amazing sculptures made of wood, steel, stone and cast rubber in the U.S. and became a great figure in modern and contemporary art. Great for ages 5 and up. $18.95.
Drawing on Walls is the perfect introduction to an incredible artist for kids. Keith Haring believed that art was for everyone, and so he used his vibrant, energetic style to create public murals, often involving children in his creative work. This picture book biography celebrates and honors Haring’s life, including his love for his partner, Juan Dubose, and his tragic death from AIDS at age 31 (handled sensitively and informatively for young readers). Great for ages 7 and up. $18.95.
Ignotofsky adapts her juvenile biography collection to introduce the youngest readers to some of the most impactful and impressive women in art history. Her joyful, colorful, vibrant illustrations are sure to catch the eyes of babies and toddlers, while the brief biographical notes will spark their curiosity as they grow. Great for infants on up. $9.99.
Look here for more page-turner picks for kiddos.