Just Behave, Pablo Picasso!

Overview


An inspiration to anyone who's ever felt judged!

"One day the world is a peaceful, lovely landscape painting... The next day - BLAM! - Pablo bursts through the canvas, paintbrush in hand, ready to paint something fresh and new."

Pablo Picasso may have been one of the most famous artists of the 20th century, but that doesn't mean he painted what people wanted him to paint! In fact, some people hated his paintings, and called them "ugly!" and "terrible!" -- something many kids ...

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Overview


An inspiration to anyone who's ever felt judged!

"One day the world is a peaceful, lovely landscape painting... The next day - BLAM! - Pablo bursts through the canvas, paintbrush in hand, ready to paint something fresh and new."

Pablo Picasso may have been one of the most famous artists of the 20th century, but that doesn't mean he painted what people wanted him to paint! In fact, some people hated his paintings, and called them "ugly!" and "terrible!" -- something many kids can relate to. But Picasso didn't listen to all those people, and kept on working the way he wanted to work, until he created something so new, so different... that people didn't know what to say!

For every young artist who's drawn something other kids think is "ugly," this story of rebellion and creativity is sure to inspire.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Winter (Barack) resists the “good for you” air of some picture-book biographies in this dynamic reimagining of Picasso’s rocket trip to the top of the 20th-century art world, while Hawkes (The Wicked Big Toddlah Goes to New York) is energized rather than intimidated by the challenge of painting the great painter. Hawkes shows the mercurial artist burning through art school (“In the time it takes them to do a sketch, Picasso has completed a large oil painting”), charming the Parisian gallery scene (“C’est magnifique! Paint about two hundred more paintings just like that!”), then enraging the French critical establishment with “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon,” a painting that mimics the African masks Picasso has fallen in love with. (Hawkes’s top-hatted critics look suspiciously Cubist.) Will Picasso accede to the critics’ demands? “He doesn’t want to, he doesn’t have to, and he’s not going to! Hah!” By dramatizing Picasso’s development rather than merely recounting it, Winter keeps readers fascinated, and by making Picasso a superhero—he bursts right through the canvas of a serene landscape on the second page—he dispels any notion of art as tired or irrelevant. Ages 4–8. (Feb.)
From the Publisher

“Winter resists the “good for you” air of some picture-book biographies in this dynamic reimagining of Picasso’s rocket trip to the top of the 20th-century art world, while Hawkes is energized rather than intimidated by the challenge of painting the great painter…. By dramatizing Picasso’s development rather than merely recounting it, Winter keeps readers fascinated, and by making Picasso a superhero—he bursts right through the canvas of a serene landscape on the second page—he dispels any notion of art as tired or irrelevant.” -- Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Using an innovative and offbeat approach, Winter provides glimpses of the energy, enthusiasm, and dedication that ruled the artist’s world. In covering his early years (his experimentation with style, perspective, and color were not always appreciated), the author delivers a pungent message to today’s young artists: don’t be discouraged if your creative efforts are criticized… Hawkes matches Winter’s storytelling rhythm, supplying vitality and intensity to the spreads with colorful scenes of Paris, people of the time, and fascinating renditions of Picasso’s own work. This book is a boon for art teachers and especially classroom teachers and librarians working to bring an artistic presence and sensibility into children’s lives.” -- School Library Journal, starred review

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Pablo Picasso "bursts through the canvas" of the "lovely landscape paintings" of his time. Talented as a youth, he moves from style to style, and from place to place. Settling in a Paris attic, he paints blue paintings when he feels blue, then some rose-colored when he does not. With these he suddenly goes from starving to rich and famous. But easily bored, and excited by African masks, he moves on to a new and shocking style. Although this work is called "terrible," an angry Picasso determines not to paint the same old thing. "To copy yourself is pathetic," he says. He ignores the outcries to paint something even more abstract and modern. Now he is called "the most original artist of his time." Hawkes applies his "open acrylic" paints and sepia pencil with a vigor that reflects Picasso's art-making. Large double-page scenes enhance the text, sometimes depicting the rooftops of Paris with an exposed attic filled with paintings; another offers a surreal image of scores of people hanging out of windows commanding Picasso to "behave." Incorporated into these scenes are over twenty reproductions of Picasso's art, listed on the final page. A note adds further information. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
Gr 2–5—As the title suggests, Picasso did not always behave. He refused to conform to popular taste or replicate his own successes. Using an innovative and offbeat approach, Winter provides glimpses of the energy, enthusiasm, and dedication that ruled the artist's world. In covering his early years (his experimentation with style, perspective, and color were not always appreciated), the author delivers a pungent message to today's young artists: don't be discouraged if your creative efforts are criticized. In doing so, Winter reminds readers that Picasso, despite being mocked, brought a whole new way of looking at the world through Cubism. The painter is, of course, the dominant, larger-than-life figure throughout—one spread, positioned vertically, finds him proclaiming, "The chief enemy of creativity is 'good sense!'" Hawkes matches Winter's storytelling rhythm, supplying vitality and intensity to the spreads with colorful scenes of Paris, people of the time, and fascinating renditions of Picasso's own work. This book is a boon for art teachers and especially classroom teachers and librarians working to bring an artistic presence and sensibility into children's lives.—Barbara Elleman, Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Amherst, MA
Kirkus Reviews
A terrific opening--a serene, classical landscape interrupted by Pablo Picasso's exuberant burst through the canvas of this bucolic scene--leads into a simplified look at Picasso's artistic development from adolescent prodigy through his 20s. From Picasso's "blue" period in Paris through his cheerier "rose" period, the young "Mr. Big Famous Art Star" still beloved of critics discovers the visual power of African masks, eventually producing the surprising Les Demoiselles d'Avignon. Winter charts the course of an artist determined to travel by his own compass. He depicts the young adult Picasso beset by critics on every side (including an unnamed wife--"Why can't you keep painting beautiful pictures?"--though Picasso would not actually marry any of the women in his life until much later). Hawkes' vibrant, full-bleed illustrations offer Picasso as a superhero of sorts, red cape included, dashing as his artistic muse might inspire, and faithfully reproduce a few familiar works. A bit of magical realism intrudes as Picasso floats through Paris and later when "Picasso expands himself to a height of one hundred feet" to face down his critics. A mere taste of the iconoclastic artist emerges, but an essential point is conveyed--that Picasso understood that art is more than the eye perceives as "real." An energetic and affectionate introduction to an artist who was always somewhat larger than life. (biographical note) (Picture book. 5-10)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780545132916
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/1/2012
  • Pages: 48
  • Sales rank: 314,326
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.50 (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.

Kevin Hawkes is the illustrator of over 40 books for children, including WESLANDIA and LIBRARY LION, a New York Times bestseller. He lives in southern Maine with his wife and children.

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