Book Review: Rembrandt (Art for Children Series)

Tax season is still underway, but now my life has been complicated by the onset of Spring Break. Must be time to remind The Ten-Year-Old about this series of Art for Children, which she first read in August 2011.
Harmensz. Van Rijn Rembrandt: Art for Children
By Ernest Lloyd Raboff
Doubleday & Co, Inc., 1987
Age Range: 4-8

The Art for Children Series, now sadly out of print, includes 16 books on major artists across the spectrum, including Rembrandt, Remington, Van Gogh, da Vinci, Gauguin, Chagall, and Picasso. (Complete list here.)

What makes this series exceptional are the large, full-color reproductions of the artist’s major works, along with a simple explanation from Raboff of the way in which the artist uses color, light, and detail (or lack thereof) to draw your eye to specific elements in the painting or, in Rembrandt’s case at least, to give you insight into the sitter’s personality.

Each book begins with a very simple biography of the artist to give some context to the work, but its focus is on teaching children how to look at and, hopefully, appreciate art. In that sense, it has as much to offer parents as it does children. I don’t know about you, but once I’ve said “I like how Picasso used blue there,” I’ve pretty much exhausted my ability to comment on art. Which is why I plan to track down the rest of the books in the series.

And now it’s your turn. What are you reading this week?

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About Shala Howell

Writer of things ranging from optical network switching white papers to genetic testing patient education materials to historical fiction set in an 1880s asylum. When I’m not scratching my head over pesky characters who refuse to do things how I want them done or dreaming of my next book (which will of course be much easier to write than the current one), my writerly self can be found blogging about life with a very curious Ten-Year-Old at Caterpickles.com, or musing about books and the writing life at BostonWriters.wordpress.com.
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