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Winner of the 2014 Schneider Family Book Award for Young Children
Winner of the 2014 Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children
A 2014 Robert F. Sibert Honor Book
A 2013 Parents' Choice Award Winner for Nonfiction
The team behind the Caldecott Honor book A River of Words: The Story of William Carlos Williams returns with a rewarding picture-book biography of self-taught African-American artist Horace Pippin. As a child, Pippin drew pictures at every opportunity, but his family's economic struggles eventually necessitated that he use his "big hands" in many other roles, including "stacking grain sacks at a feed store, shoveling coal at a rail yard," and later serving in WWI. Despite a war injury to his right arm, Pippin adapted in order to continue drawing and painting, eventually leading to recognition and fame in the art world. Sweet's naïf mixed-media collages blend thick, solid color blocks with motifs mined from Pippin's vibrant compositions, which range from war scenes to that of children at play. Quotations from Pippin about the psychological scars of war and his artistic process are hand-drawn into Sweet's images, underscoring how art was not only a joyful outlet for Pippin, but also a vital means of interpreting the world. Ages 5-8. Author's agent: Alyssa Eisner Henkin, Trident Media Group.
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Starred Review, School Library Journal, January 1, 2013:
“Bryant’s meticulously researched, eloquent text makes this a winning read-aloud, while Sweet’s vibrant, folksy illustrations, rendered in watercolor, gouache, and mixed media, portray the joys and hardships of the man’s life, using his trademark palette…with just a splash of red.”
Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews, December 1, 2012:
“This outstanding portrait of African-American artist Horace Pippin (1888-1946) allows Pippin’s work to shine—and his heart too.”
Starred Review, Booklist, November 1, 2012:
“…a well-structured narrative with recurring themes and a highly accessible style…outstanding.”
Posted December 20, 2013
This book was presented as a gift to an artist who teaches art and works as a full-time church worker. The recipient loves it. The book describes the life of Horace Pippin so his life experience AND his art can be understood. The publisher used good paper stock and the author and illustrator captured their subject. I'm glad I bought the hard cover edition. The quality of this publication over-tops most of what is 'out there'.
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