Looking for a book, DVD, CD, or other item? Search our catalog!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Art for Children

WARNING: Rant ahead!

I've been doing some research on a Boston sculptor, Katherine Lane Weems. Weems is the woman who sculpted the dolphins that you see outside the New England Aquarium. I'm writing a short profile for a book on famous, and not-so-famous women, of Massachusetts.

There is next to nothing available for adults on her life and work, and for kids there is even less. I found one brief reference in a children's book we had here in the library, Animals Observed: A Look at Animals in Art by Dorcas MacClintock [J 704.9 MAC]. So, since I can't find suitable resources for children, I thought that in the "To Learn More About..." section of my project, I would include children's books about sculpture in general. That should be easy...

WRONG! There is next to nothing on sculpture for children. I checked many sources. But, not only that, there is very little being published now on art in general for children! Unbelievable!

Part of it is probably due to the de-emphasis of art in the school curriculum. (Don't even get me started on the reasons for that!) Another, is the cutting back on money for what is considered to be "extras" such as physical education, music, and art.

These cutbacks trickle down to the publishers of children's materials, and thus, the publishing of books on making art slows down to a snail's pace. How sad.

So, I'm glad we've kept up our children's art section over the years. We're going to have to keep some of the older books for a longer period simply because there's going to be nothing to replace them with!

I feel sorry for the kids who have an artistic bent. Let's just hope that kids' creative expressions will find a release--in one form or another!

I have a few suggestions of fun and informative titles to share with your young artists:

Lacey, Sue. Animals ("Start with Art" series). [J 704.9 LAC] Examines different techniques and styles that can be used when drawing animals, including watercolor, sketching, photomontage, printing, and clay modeling, using examples from great artists and suggestions for creating your own works.

Luxbacher, Irene. The Jumbo Book of Art: An Artistic Adventure from the Avenue Road Arts School. [J 701.8 LUX] Pictures and text provide children with instructions for creating art projects involving drawing, painting, sculpture, and mixed media.

Wolffe, Gillian. Look! Zoom In On Art! [J 750 WOL] Written by an acclaimed art educator, this dynamic, beautifully illustrated guide teaches young people how to look at art and "see" a painting from all perspectives.

No comments:

Post a Comment