Frida

Overview

Cuando su madre la deja a cargo de sus cinco hermanas, su padre la ensena a utilizar los pinceles y a colorear. Cuando una enfermedad la hace guardar cama durante meses, Frida dibuja para no aburrise. Cuando un accidente en autobus la sume en el dolor, Frida expresa su tristeza y depresion en sus pinturas. Una y otra vez, durante toda su vida, Frida Kahlo utiliza el arte para expresar sus sentimientos. Jonah Winter y Ana Juan se asoman a la vida y la obra de esta gran pintora para ofrecerle un hermoso tributo con...

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Overview

Cuando su madre la deja a cargo de sus cinco hermanas, su padre la ensena a utilizar los pinceles y a colorear. Cuando una enfermedad la hace guardar cama durante meses, Frida dibuja para no aburrise. Cuando un accidente en autobus la sume en el dolor, Frida expresa su tristeza y depresion en sus pinturas. Una y otra vez, durante toda su vida, Frida Kahlo utiliza el arte para expresar sus sentimientos. Jonah Winter y Ana Juan se asoman a la vida y la obra de esta gran pintora para ofrecerle un hermoso tributo con este maravilloso libro.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Praise for DIEGO (1991):

"An accessible picture book about the life and work of Diego Rivera sounds like an oxymoron, but Winter . . . succeed[s] beyond belief. . . . The last pictures show him as a young man, perched on his scaffolding, brushes in hand, beckoning viewers on with his ardent glance. Readers will wish they could follow."
-- School Library Journal
"An excellent beginning biography."
-- Kirkus

* One of The Ruminator Review's 100 Best Children's Books of the Twentieth Century

* A Reading Rainbow Review book

* A 1991 Parents' Choice Award Honor winner

Praise for FAIR BALL! (1997):

Certain to be a hit with kids who take baseball history seriously, Winter's . . . handsome volume devotes a spread each to 14 stars of the Negro Leagues. Balancing stats with engaging trivia and anecdotes, the author will open readers' eyes to the injustices of segregated baseball. . . . This picture book [will] help set some records straight.
-- Publishers Weekly

A good, highly accessible introduction to a group of athletes who deserve to be as well known as their white counterparts.
-- School Library Journal

Publishers Weekly
Winter, who brought the Mexican muralist vividly to life in Diego, focuses on Diego Rivera's bride, Frida Kahlo an accomplished artist in her own right in this striking picture book-biography. With a spare narrative more akin to poetry than prose, the author touches on important events in his subject's childhood Frida's loneliness and the polio that kept her bedridden for months, as well as a bus accident, at age 18, that nearly killed her. He then shows how, each time, art helped her to transcend her injuries ("She turns her pain into something beautiful") and to unleash her magically surreal vision of the world in paintings ("In museums, people still look at them and weep and sigh and smile"). Juan, a Spanish fine artist and New Yorker cover artist making her children's book debut, creates artwork bursting with saturated color and infused with Mexican folk art motifs that also influenced Frida's own style. Floating figures, fantastical creatures and celestial bodies with human features cavort across the pages. Ana transforms Frida herself from a solemn, moon-faced child with uncompromising eyebrows (her well-known physical trait) to a woman whose gaunt features hint at both strength and inner struggle. One particularly breathtaking image shows the artist floating against a night sky, eyes closed and arms crossed on her chest in a death pose, held in the grip of a tree's thorny, gnarled branches ("Her body will hurt, always"). An outstanding introduction to an influential artist. Ages 4-10. (Feb.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Winter, who brought the Mexican muralist vividly to life in Diego, focuses on Diego Rivera's bride, Frida Kahlo an accomplished artist in her own right in this striking picture book-biography. With a spare narrative more akin to poetry than prose, the author touches on important events in his subject's childhood Frida's loneliness and the polio that kept her bedridden for months, as well as a bus accident, at age 18, that nearly killed her. He then shows how, each time, art helped her to transcend her injuries ("She turns her pain into something beautiful") and to unleash her magically surreal vision of the world in paintings ("In museums, people still look at them and weep and sigh and smile"). Juan, a Spanish fine artist and New Yorker cover artist making her children's book debut, creates artwork bursting with saturated color and infused with Mexican folk art motifs that also influenced Frida's own style. Floating figures, fantastical creatures and celestial bodies with human features cavort across the pages. Ana transforms Frida herself from a solemn, moon-faced child with uncompromising eyebrows (her well-known physical trait) to a woman whose gaunt features hint at both strength and inner struggle. One particularly breathtaking image shows the artist floating against a night sky, eyes closed and arms crossed on her chest in a death pose, held in the grip of a tree's thorny, gnarled branches ("Her body will hurt, always"). An outstanding introduction to an influential artist. Ages 4-10. (Feb.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Criticas
K-Gr 4-This wonderfully conceived early biography of artist Frida Kahlo is a feast for the eyes. Winter's succinct and straightforward narrative aptly describes the subject's childhood and the origins of her artistic nature. Juan borrows from the artist's own technique, using many of Kahlo's symbols in her illustrations, such as monkeys, skeletons, and jaguars. Juan has created whimsical, colorful characters to portray Frida's own fertile imagination. At times the drawings become very dramatic and convey Kahlo's inner strength and willpower. Mlawer's translation of Winter's straightforward, lyrical narrative is flawless, accurately conveying not only the content but the feel of the English original. Author and illustrator notes are included. An essential purchase for school and public libraries.
—Maria Mena, LeRoy Collins Leon Cty. P.L., Tallahassee, FL Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
A dreamlike work that shows how beauty can arise from pain, Frida is a marvelous piece of children's storytelling. Simply yet richly told, and gorgeously illustrated with Mexican folk motifs, it chronicles the difficult life of artist Frida Kahlo. Because of childhood polio and, later, a devastating bus accident, Kahlo must retreat into her mind and her art in order to withstand pain and isolation. Her work is strange and unsettling, and because it was created by a woman, it could not achieve any real respect. But she painted because she had to, no matter what the art world said, and her work was eventually recognized and valued. Juan's acrylic-and-wax paintings dominate the pages, leaving little room for words; fortunately, Winter's prose is eloquently simple. The most arresting image in the book is of Kahlo, eyes closed and arms crossed, floating in a night sky while wrapped in thorny branches, above text that tells of the artist's constant physical pain and disability. The nearby moon, oddly dimmed, sheds a tear but all around Kahlo are fireflies¾tiny points of light in the darkness. It's a lovely metaphor for the way that Kahlo chose to focus on the light of her creative vision rather than give in to darkness. 2002, Arthur A. Levine Books, $16.95. Ages 5 to 9. Reviewer: Donna Freedman
School Library Journal
Gr 2-5-This picture-book biography of the Mexican-born artist captures the essence of her difficult life and her triumph as a painter. Written in present tense, the story has immediacy, and the magnificent full-page acrylic illustrations cry out with emotion, as is befitting the work of a passionate artist. Kahlo, often lonely, had an active fantasy life, fueled by her creation of an imaginary friend and her exposure to the work of her artist father. Stricken with polio at age seven, she turned to drawing as her solace; years later when a bus accident nearly claimed her life, art again distracted her. While the simply told yet poignant story is inspiring, the true strength of this book lies in Juan's incredible illustrations. Their brilliant colors and expressionistic style convey the sense of daring and the excitement that Kahlo demonstrated both in her zest for life and in her splendid work. Figures familiar to the artist from Mexican folklore abound and their playfulness as they dance from page to page underscores the woman's artistic spirit. Her story is sure to be an inspiration, particularly to youngsters who see life differently from their peers and who dare to express these differences in artistic ways. A bold, successful attempt at incorporating the feel of the artist's own style into an explanation of her life.-Nancy Menaldi-Scanlan, LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A picture-book homage to the Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, whose indomitable spirit has become a revered icon for struggling women artists. The truncated text outlines her life in a simplistic style, relating her childhood illness and the almost-fatal school bus accident that left her in constant physical pain. It was her painting that saved her, becoming her imaginary friend. Instead of crying, she painted pictures of herself crying. The account ends with a description of her paintings as "exvotos": "magical scenes with words at the bottom, scenes of accidents with angels coming to the rescue. They are prayers for people who are sick." Neither her marriage to Diego Rivera nor her death is included. Like Kahlo's art, the illustrations are strikingly stylized. Done in acrylics and wax, they convey a surrealistic sensibility, using six traditional Mexican characters as a motif (e.g., skeleton, devil, jaguar) and portraying them as Kahlo's companions. The artwork lends an air of theatricality (her infamous eyebrows are depicted as the wings of a black bird) with the text scripting that effect: "She paints what she sees in her head-on top of what she sees with her eyes." The enticing cover depicts Kahlo as a child riding on a red bird while she is painting red birds in the sky. Explanatory notes from both author and illustrator provide context and import, citing biographical details and an artistic style that is a tribute to her. Her popularity has increased significantly in recent time-but who is the audience for this book? Certainly, the picture-book format can serve as an introduction to this exotic artist for young children, and kids may be intrigued by the unusual figures and inherentdrama. But it is more likely that older readers may develop an artistic curiosity and appreciation for this woman's provocative work. (Picture book/biography. 6-10)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439331180
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/28/2002
  • Language: Spanish
  • Edition description: SPANISH
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 252,167
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 400L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 11.00 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 0.21 (d)

Meet the Author


Jonah Winter has written many exciting picture book biographies for children, with subjects that include Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Barack Obama, and Dizzy Gillespie. He lives in Pittsburgh, PA.

Ana Juan illustrated FRIDA, Jonah Winter's picture book biography of Frida Kahlo, which was an ALA Notable Book and received an Americas Honor Award. She also received the Ezra Jack Keats award for THE NIGHT EATER, her first book as author-illustrator. She lives in Madrid, Spain.

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