Famous Artists

Chinwe Roy
by Verna Wilkins
Not all artists are white, male and dead. Nigerian born Chinwe Roy is female, black and, at the time of writing, very much alive. This account of her life takes her from her schooldays in Nigeria, through the privations of the Biafran War and her struggle to overcome a debilitating illness to her successful commission to paint the Queen’s portrait. It is part of Tamarind’s excellent Black Profiles series designed to give black children positive role models.
Ages 8-12+
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Degas and the Little Dancer
by Laurence Anholt
(Frances Lincoln)
This picture book about Edgar Degas tells the story of Marie, the little
dancer he immortalised in his famous sculpture. The delightful illustrations
are drawn in impressionist style and incorporate some of his well known
paintings. A useful book for introducing children to art and one likely
to catch the interest of aspiring ballerinas.
Ages 6-11
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Camille and the Sunflowers
by Laurence Anholt
(Frances Lincoln)
There is something about Van Gogh’s pictures which catches the interest
of young children so this book is sure to be popular. It tells the story
of the painter through the eyes of Camille, a young boy who lives in the
town where Van Gogh comes to stay. The excellent illustrations include
some of Van Gogh’s own work and the picture of him in his bedroom is cleverly
based on his own painting. The story includes the way he was teased and
driven away for being different so it leads naturally to discussion of
Ages 5-9
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Picasso and the Girl with the Ponytail
by Laurence Anholt
(Frances Lincoln)
Told from the point of view of the girl in the title, this true story
tells how she met Picasso and became one of his models. The text combines
well with the colourful, eye-catching illustrations to produce an excellent
book which brings to life the way Picasso worked and gained his inspiration.
Ages 6-12 and older children with special needs
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The Great Artists Series
by David Spence
(Snapping Turtle Guides)
This low priced series of books on famous artists are an excellent choice
for older children and adults who are seriously interested in art. As
well as looking at the artist’s life and work, each book puts the artist
in his historical setting and talks about the various influences on his
painting and the way his art has influenced others. Well illustrated with
full colour photographs, these books are excellent value for money and
a great help for school projects.
Ages 12 to adult. Younger children may need adult help with the
Buy Van Gogh from Amazon
Buy Degas from Amazon
Buy Picasso from Amazon