Picture Books

Radiant Child: the Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat by Javaka Steptoe

(Children + CT275.B3774 S73 2016)

“Jean-Michel Basquiat and his unique, collage-style paintings rocked to fame in the 1980s as a cultural phenomenon unlike anything the art world had ever seen. But before that, he was a little boy who saw art everywhere: in poetry books and museums, in games and in the words that we speak, and in the pulsing energy of New York City. Now, award-winning illustrator Javaka Steptoe’s vivid text and bold artwork echoing Basquiat’s own introduce young readers to the powerful message that art doesn’t always have to be neat or clean—and definitely not inside the lines—to be beautiful.”—Provided by publisher.

Gordon Parks: How the Photographer Captured Black and White America by Carole Boston Weatherford; illustrated by Jamey Christoph

(Children + CT275.P375 W42 2015)

“Gordon Parks is most famous for being the first black director in Hollywood. But before he made movies and wrote books, he was a poor African American looking for work. When he bought a camera, his life changed forever. He taught himself how to take pictures and before long, people noticed.”—Provided by publisher.

Cloth Lullaby: The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois by Amy Novesky; illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault

(Children + CT1018.B69 .N68 2016)

“Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010) was a world-renowned modern artist noted for her sculptures made of wood, steel, stone, and cast rubber. Her most famous spider sculpture, Maman, stands more than 30 feet high. Just as spiders spin and repair their webs, Louise’s own mother was a weaver of tapestries. Louise spent her childhood in France as an apprentice to her mother before she became a tapestry artist herself. She worked with fabric throughout her career, and this biographical picture book shows how Bourgeois’s childhood experiences weaving with her loving, nurturing mother provided the inspiration for her most famous works. With a beautifully nuanced and poetic story, this book stunningly captures the relationship between mother and daughter and illuminates how memories are woven into us all.”—Provided by publisher.

My Name is Georgia: A Portrait by Jeanette Winter

(Children ND237.O5 W56 1998)

Presents, in brief text and illustrations, the life of the painter who drew much of her inspiration from nature.

The Theft of the Mona Lisa by Cyriel Verleyen; illustrated by Henry Branton

(Children ND623.L5 V513 1971)

Describes Leonardo da Vinci’s efforts to get the Mona Lisa to smile, the trouble the smile caused him, and the speculation it aroused in the Louvre for three centuries until the painting was mysteriously stolen.

Dinner at Magritte’s by Michael Garland

(Children + PZ7.G18413 Di 1995)

Young Pierre spends the day with surrealist artists René Magritte and Salvador Dalí.

The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau by Jon Agee

(Children Picture Book + AGEE)

An unknown artist becomes an overnight sensation when his painting comes to life.

Maybe Something Beautiful: How Art Transformed a Neighborhood by F. Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell; illustrated by Rafael Lopez

(Children Picture Book +CAMPO)

“Mira lives in a gray and hopeless urban community until a muralist arrives and, along with his paints and brushes, brings color, joy, and togetherness to Mira and her neighbors.”—Provided by publisher.

Eyes of the Dragon by Margaret Leaf; illustrated by Ed Young

(Children Picture Book LEAF)

An artist agrees to paint a dragon on the wall of a Chinese village, but the magistrate’s insistence that he paint eyes on the dragon has amazing results.

Matthew’s Dream by Leo Lionni

(Children Picture Book + LIONN)

A visit to an art museum inspires a young mouse to become a painter.

Brush of the Gods by Lenore Look

(Children Picture Book + LOOK)

During the Tang dynasty, master painter Wu Daozi creates an extraordinary mural for the emperor.

Lulu and the Flying Babies by Posy Simmonds

(Children Picture Book + SIMMO)

Stuck waiting for her family in the art museum when she would much rather be playing outside in the park, a little girl is picked up by two cherubim and taken for a wild romp through several paintings.

You Can’t Take a Balloon Into the Museum of Fine Arts by Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman; illustrated by Robin Preiss Glaser

(Children Picture Book + WEITZ)

While a brother and sister, along with their grandparents, visit the Museum of Fine Arts, the balloon they were not allowed to bring into the museum floats around Boston, causing a series of mishaps at various tourist sites.

Art & Max by Davis Wiesner

(Children Picture Book WIESN)

Max wants to be an artist like Arthur, but his first attempt at using a paintbrush sends the two friends on a whirlwind trip through various media, with unexpected consequences.

Frida by Jonah Winter; illustrated by Ana Juan

(Children Picture Book WINTE)

Discusses the childhood of Frida Kahlo and how it influenced her art.

The Magic Brush by Kat Yeh; illustrated by Huy Voun Lee

(Children Picture Book YEH)

Jasmine’s grandfather teaches her Chinese calligraphy by drawing and making up stories together. Includes Chinese characters and pronunciation key, brief history of Chinese art, and descriptions of Chinese treats.

Chapter Books

Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett ; illustrated by Brett Helquist

(Children PZ7.B2128 Ch 2004)

When seemingly unrelated and strange events start to happen and a precious Vermeer painting disappears, eleven-year-olds Petra and Calder combine their talents to solve an international art scandal.

Masterpiece by Elise Broach

(Children PZ7.B78083 Mas 2008)

After Marvin, a beetle, makes a miniature drawing as an eleventh birthday gift for James, a human with whom he shares a house, the two new friends work together to help recover a Durer drawing stolen from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankenweiler by E.L. Konigsburg

(Children PZ7.K8352 Fr)

“Claudia knew that she could never pull off the old-fashioned kind of running away…so she decided not to run FROM somewhere, but TO somewhere. And so, after some careful planning, she and her younger brother, Jamie, escaped—right into a mystery that made headlines!” —Provided by publisher.

The Old Man Mad About Drawing: A Tale of Hokusai by François Place

(Children PZ7.P6899 Ol 2004)

Tojiro, a young seller of rice cakes in the Japanese capital of Edo, later known as Tokyo, is amazed to discover that the grumpy and shabby old man who buys his cakes is a famous artist renowned for his sketches, prints, and paintings of flowers, animals, and landscapes.

Young Adult

Still Life With Tornado by A. S. King

(Young Adult PZ7.K573 St 2016)

“A talented 16-year-old artist slowly discovers the history of domestic violence behind why her brother left the family years earlier and why she suddenly cannot make art.” — Provided by publisher

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

(Young Adult PZ7.N433835 Il 2014)

“Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways … until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else — an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.” — Provided by publisher

Informational Books

Virginia Lee Burton: A Life in Art by Barbara Elleman

(Children + CT275.B8745 E44 2002)

Examines the life, career, artistic style, and literary themes of the twentieth-century author and illustrator of such classic picture books as “Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel” and “The Little House.”

Chuck Close: Face Book by Chuck Close

(Children + CT275.C585 A3 2012)

Presents an autobiography about the author’s artistic life, describing the creative processes he uses in the studio and his struggles with his disabilities. Includes a self-portrait mix-and-match section that demonstrates his techniques and images.

Story Painter: The Life of Jacob Lawrence by John Duggleby

(Children + CT275.L38653 D83 1998)

A biography of the African American artist who grew up in the midst of the Harlem Renaissance and became one of the most renowned painters of the life of his people.

Randolph Caldecott: The Man Who Could Not Stop Drawing by Leonard S. Marcus

(Children Lg CT788.C1443 M37 2013)

Available in time for the 75th anniversary of the Caldecott Medal, an utterly unique biography of the remarkable artist the award honors: Randolph Caldecott, the father of the modern picture book. Includes never-before-published drawings by Caldecott himself.

Leonardo: Beautiful Dreamer by Robert Byrd

(Children + N6923.L33 B97 2003)

Illustrations and text portray the life of Leonardo da Vinci, who gained fame as a artist through such works as the Mona Lisa, and as a scientist by studying various subjects including human anatomy and flight.

Cave Paintings to Picasso by Henry Sayre

(Children + N7440 .S29 2004)

Introduces fifty celebrated works of art, including King Tut’s sarcophagus and Andy Warhol’s paintings of Campbell’s soup cans, with historical and interpretive information for each piece.

Romare Bearden: Collage of Memories by Jan Greenberg

(Children + N6537.B4 G74 2003)

Recounts the life of the twentieth-century African-American collage artist who used his southern childhood, New York City, jazz, and Paris to influence his bold and meaningful art.

Don’t Hold Me Back: My Life and Art by Winfred Rembert

(Children + ND237.R35 A2 2003)

Through words and paintings, an artist tells about growing up on a cotton plantation in Cuthbert, Georgia, serving time in prison for his actions during a civil rights demonstration, and finding a purpose and direction in life.

Grant Wood: The Artist in the Hayloft by Deborah J. Leach

(Children + ND237.W795 L43 2005)

This tour through Grant Wood’s Cedar Rapids hayloft studio welcomes young readers into the world of an iconic, rural American artist whose rich, stylised paintings have an immediate appeal to children.

Monet by Jude Welton

(Children + ND553.M7 W39 1999)

“Explore Claude Monet’s life and art, and the influences that shaped his work.” —Provided by publisher.

Van Gogh by Bruce Bernard

(Children + ND653.G7 B47 2000)

“Explore Vincent van Gogh’s life and art, and the influences that shaped his work.” —Provided by publisher.

Four Pictures by Emily Carr by Nicolas Debon

(Children ND249.C3 D42 2003)

Written and illustrated in comic strips, the book traces Carr’s life through four of her famous paintings.