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ERIC Number: EJ974883
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Sep
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0045-6713
Pictures in Pictures: Art History and Art Museums in Children's Picture Books
Yohlin, Elizabeth
Children's Literature in Education, v43 n3 p260-272 Sep 2012
Children's picture books that recreate, parody, or fictionalize famous artworks and introduce the art museum experience, a genre to which I will refer as "children's art books," have become increasingly popular over the past decade. This essay explores the pedagogical implications of this trend through the family program "Picture Books and Picture Looks" conducted at the Art Institute of Chicago. Program sessions were observed to learn the extent to which picture books featuring the painting A Sunday on La Grande Jatte--1884 (Seurat) informed and impacted children's experiences with the original artwork. The books "Katie's Sunday Afternoon" (Mayhew, "2005"), "Babar's Museum of Art" (De Brunhoff, "2003"), and "Willy's Pictures" (Browne, "2000") provided the foundation for the program. In addition to these three books, "The Dot" (Reynolds, "2003"), which does not include a reference to "La Grande Jatte" (Seurat, "1884-1886"), acted as a "control" variable. This research demonstrates that while most picture books can be used to establish a level of comfort in an environment that is new to children, those that directly referenced the painting provided a base level of knowledge from which children could confidently draw upon encountering the original work. The research further indicated that, when used in conjunction with original artworks, children's art books provide unique and distinct entry points for talking about art. The inclusion of artwork in children's picture books elicits an enthusiasm and recognition that enhances the museum experience, and such books can be effective tools for enabling reflective, imaginative experiences with art.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A