Robyn Montana Turner is the author of an exceptionally well produced series on women artists. The biographies contain first-rate, full-color reproductions, black-and-white illustrations and photographs, and are written in a simple, conversational style that vivifies the artists and their works. Ms. Turner's five "Portraits of Women Artists for Children" include Mary Cassatt, Frida Kahlo, Faith Ringgold, Georgia O'Keefe, and Rosa Bonheur.
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-- In this series entry, Turner is given just 32 pages to tell this extraordinary woman's story and the ways in which it is reflected in her work. As a victim of childhood polio, she created an imaginary friend with whom she could dance freely and thus began the process by which she used her vivid imagination to escape the pain that would dominate her adult years. Turner explains the artist's use of symbolism in ``The Two Fridas'' and ``My Dress Hangs There'' and her deep love of family and country in ``Roots'' and ``My Grandparents, My Parents and I (Family Tree).'' Because of the limited number of pages and the intended audience, this treatment omits many of Kahlo's more disturbing or controversial experiences. There is only one mention of the strong commitment to communism and the Mexican revolutionary movements that were the center of her husband's work and their life together. Black-and-white photographs and good-quality, full-color reproductions accompany the text. For a candid portrayal that includes these details and gives a much more vivid picture of this artist's life, see Drucker's Frida Kahlo (Bantam, 1991). --Eleanor K. MacDonald, Beverly Hills Public Library
Though she's usually identified as the wife of muralist Diego Rivera, Kahlo was a painter in her own right, with a highly individual and sometimes surreal style. Turner introduces Kahlo's life and work in this attractive biography from the series Portraits of Women Artists for Children. Black-and-white photos offer glimpses of this Mexican painter and her world, but the full-color reproductions of her paintings will intrigue kids more. Since women artists are as poorly represented in most library collections as they are in most histories of art, this well-written volume will help fill the growing demand. Striking a good balance between biographical information and interpretation of individual paintings, the book will be useful to "picture persons" visiting elementary school classrooms as well as to students writing reports on Kahlo.