Monday, July 22, 2013

A Splash of Red: The Life and Art of Horace Pippin

Cover art for A SPLASH OF RED

Author: Jen Bryant
Illustrator:  Melissa Sweet
Publisher:  Alfred A. Knopf
Publication Year: 2013
Location: Knox County Public Library- Lawson McGhee

Awards:   Parents' Choice gold award, Junior Library guild selection, Booklist, Kirkus, Publisher's Weekly & School Library Journal starred reviews

Summary:  The story of African-American artist Horace Pippin (1888-1946). Pippin loved to draw for everyone. When he won an art prize of a box of paints, he began to paint for everyone. When he was in eighth grade, he had to quit school to support his family, but he still loved drawing for people. Even when he joined the army during World War I, he continued drawing pictures for his soldier friends. After he is injured, he returns home and marries but his injury keeps him from working or drawing. Finally, he forced himself to move his injured arm and started painting again. Soon, Horace's paintings became famous and he continued to paint holding his weak arm up with his strong one. The mixed-media collages by Melissa Sweet incorporate many of Horace Pippin's sayings and actual artwork, and the story is incredibly inspiring.

Classroom Ideas: This book is about the World War I era, and the artist was a true hero. The theme of the story is one of perseverance and believing in yourself.

Extras: Historical note that with a biography, author's note, illustrator's note, list of further resources, quotations sources. The endpapers have a map of the museums where Pippin's art can be found in American museums.

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