This richly illustrated story-poem celebrates the experience of learning to paint in the presence of a master teacher. Set in the 1900s when artist Emily Carr (18711945) was teaching art to children, The Art Room highlights Carr’s passion for painting the natural world and the sense of freedom she inspired in her students. Emily Carr’s work has been exhibited with, and frequently compared to, the art of Georgia O’Keeffe and Frida Kahlo. Pascal Milelli’s illustrations are a ...
This richly illustrated story-poem celebrates the experience of learning to paint in the presence of a master teacher. Set in the 1900s when artist Emily Carr (18711945) was teaching art to children, The Art Room highlights Carr’s passion for painting the natural world and the sense of freedom she inspired in her students. Emily Carr’s work has been exhibited with, and frequently compared to, the art of Georgia O’Keeffe and Frida Kahlo. Pascal Milelli’s illustrations are a perfect foil to the work Carr created.
Vande Griek (A Gift for Ampato) pays tribute to her compatriot, Canadian artist Emily Carr (1871-1945), by imagining the experience of the children to whom Carr taught drawing and painting in the early 1900s. Her text is adulatory but trades on stereotypes: the art teacher, her hair in a messy bun, "danced and sang her way through the room... getting us to make paint fly and paper come alive." (Most of Carr's biographers agree that she was cantankerous.) While the images can be keen (an office building is filled with "typewriters talking business and tongues babbling news"), they don't build into a commanding text. Neither Miss Carr nor the narrator has personality, serving instead as a channel for the author's awe at the revelatory powers of art (at the end, the children "went out to see with eyes that were wide"). Milelli's (Rainbow Bay) oil paintings, however, possess a shining luminosity, whether depicting the classroom or excursions to the harbor. His use of color breathes life into the author's hackneyed themes. Ages 4-7. (Apr.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Do you know a child who is interested in art? This picture book (complete with beautiful oil on canvas paintings) is a simple story about students who went to study art with Emily Carr. Emily Carr is one of the great contemporary artists who taught drawing and painting in the early 1900's to support herself. Part of the beauty of this story is that it teaches about the personality of Ms. Carr. She had a bird on her shoulder, and she loved to laugh and enjoy herself. The story also teaches children that doing art will teach you to see things with eyes that are wide. There is beauty all around, inside as well as outdoors. This book can be used to teach art, or to teach about the artist, Ms. Emily Carr. Illustrator Pascal Milelli has used his rich style foil to illustrate the work that Emily Carr was doing at the time of this story. This book will serve as an inspiration to children who love to paint and draw. 2002, Groundwood Books/Douglas & McIntyre,
— Nicole Peterson
School Library Journal
Gr 2-5-The striking art and poetic text of this picture book re-create the studio of Canadian artist Emily Carr in the early 1900s. Her drawing and painting lessons to young children at that time reflected the freedom of her own work, similar in movement and expressive color to the work of Vincent van Gogh and Georgia O' Keeffe. Vande Griek's first-person account follows a young artist up angled steps to a magical room of laughter, paint, and exotic birds and an outdoor studio of blue skies and ocean. Carr's artistic vision and gift to her students are made clear: "where pinks and purples spilled from window boxes and leapt from walls, we giggled and gulped and gabbed with Miss Carr about people, and animals, and art." Milelli's rich-toned oils with vibrant shades of oranges, pinks, and earth tones reveal the streets and people of the Northwest in 1900, the joy on the faces of young artists, and a menagerie of animals within Carr's studio. Illustrations match the impressionistic movement and color reflective of the woman's art. A fine addition to art programs as a presentation of a noted female artist of the 20th century.-Mary Elam, Forman Elementary School, Plano, TX Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.