Friday, January 9, 2015

A Picture Book a Day for a Year: Day 265

Picture Book:  Alexander Calder

Author & Illustrator: Mike Venezia

Summary: The early life and art career of Alexander Calder is presented here with photographs as well as the author’s comical cartoons of key aspects of Calder’s life. Calder is an artist widely known for his 20th century invention of mobiles and his large sculptures. Activities in his early years, in which Calder created his own toys from wire and found objects, are presented as precursors to his distinctive art and influential career.

Hanna’s Comments: This book is representative of Mike Venezia’s prolific work. It is part of his series: Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists. His other series include Getting to Know the U. S. Presidents, Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Composers, and Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Inventors & Scientists. Corresponding to the list of series above, Venezia’s subjects range from Abraham Lincoln, to the Beatles, to Marie Curie. At this time, this book is quite expensive to purchase so look in your local library. Not all books in this author’s series are so rare and expensive. Although I am a big fan of Calder’s art, I’m especially offering this book as a sample of Venenzia’s many resource books. His biographies could offer numerous possibilities for supplementing children’s programming in your faith community or as the basis for writing your own program. For instance, I could see this book as inspiration for a thematic unit about wind, a concept that is often in our Holy Scriptures.

Publisher & Date of Publication: Children’s Press, 1998

Age & Grade Appropriateness: 8 and up, 2nd and up

# of Pages: 32

Available in Spanish? Not at present

Formats other than Book: None at present

PBT Category: Rare but Worth the Search, Non-fiction

PBT Topics this Book Connects with: abilities, adaptation/assimilation, America, art, beginnings/morning, breath/breathing/wind, call/calling/vocation, creativity/imagination/ingenuity, gifts/talents, Holy Spirit/spirit, image of God, passion, play

Scripture Connections: We are made in Creator God’s image (Genesis 1:27); whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise think about these things (Philippians 4:8)

Idea(s) for Application: Use this book in a program on wind or how the Holy Spirit moves us. 

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