From Books

750 Years in Paris by Vincent Mahé

You can find Vincent Mahé’s (aka Mr. Bidon) illustrations all over The New Yorker, including the above illustration of the new National Museum of African American History and Culture in D.C. We picked up one his picture books in Paris this summer. 750 Years In Paris is one of my favorite architectural history books. With 60 large scale illustrations, …

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“Never Content” by Bruno Munari

I would have bought this picture book when I was 2 years old because of the flaps, rhythm, and animals. I would have bought this book when I was 13 years old because it is poetic. I bought this book this summer because it captures a lifetime of conversations in a very short story. Each …

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Documenting Public Art: The Floating Piers in a Book

In June, we visited Christo’s most recent art installation on Lago Iseo in northern Italy. I posted pictures and thoughts about our expierence here. The catalogue, “Christo and Jeanne-Claude: The Floating Piers,” was published in late August and arrived in our mailbox minutes later. Each page is full of crisp, stunning photographs and succinct captions. The book congruously pictures the logistics, …

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Bruno Munari’s “Square”

Bruno Munari is described as a prolific artist, designer, and inventor. Pablo Picasso called him “the Leonardo of our time.” Pierre Restany described him as “the Leonardo and the Peter Pan of Italian design.” And these are two characters parents know little preschool boys can relate to. During Munari’s lifetime (1907-1998),  he created a long list of children’s …

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Action Jackson

Jackson Pollock’s work is something to see in person! Encountering a reproduction is not the same experience. But still many people will say that a child could make this. It’s a common misunderstanding and that’s why the quiz, “Can You Tell The Difference Between Modern Art And Paintings By Toddlers?” is popular.  Before we figure out if …

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Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Through the Gates and Beyond

Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Through the Gates and Beyond by Jan Greenberg is a non-fiction book written for children. It focuses on The Gates exhibition from 2005 in NYC, but also introduces a handful of the artists’ other major works. My favorite line in the book is when Jeanne-Claude is quoted asserting “It has no purpose. …

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Roberto The Insect Architect

    When I tell my children stories about artists or architects, I want them to know that they dream big, work hard, and redirect the ship towards something better. “Roberto The Insect Architect” by Nina Laden is one of my favorite picture books about being an architect. It’s also a story about building dreams and being creative …

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Dreaming Up

Architecture is a big part of my studio work, and I am looking forward to being at the Biennale in Venice.  “Dreaming Up” by Christy Hale is a book that makes talking about the history of architecture easy! On one side of the page is an illustration of children playing with the usual suspects, pillows, cards, toothpicks, etc. …

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Picasso and Minou

We recently added Paris to our summer itinerary, and I am obviously excited! We are reading this book to get in the mood.  You can expect more posts coming up soon about artists and books that are getting us ready for our family trip to Europe. Picasso and Minou by P.I. Maltbie and illustrated by Pau Estrada …

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The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse

Eric Carle’s simple board book reads, “I am an artist and I paint…blue horses… orange elephants… and polka dotted donkeys!” My children think it is funny because obviously the horses at the farm are not blue. We know that artists think outside of the box and imagine new things, but it is equally important for engineers, dads, …

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