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The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse
Contributor(s): Carle, Eric
ISBN: 0399257136     ISBN-13: 9780399257131
Publisher: Philomel Books
    OUR PRICE: $16.19  
Product Type: School And Library - Other Formats
Published: October 2011
Annotation: A vibrantly colored story by the award-winning author of The Very Hungry Caterpillar invites youngsters to tap into their creativity through the story of an artist who painted the world just as he saw it in his imagination. Includes biographical information about the German painter Franz Marc, who created unconventional animal paintings in the early 1900s.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Painting; Fiction.
Artists; Fiction.
Animals; Fiction.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | Art & Architecture
- Juvenile Fiction | Animals
Dewey: [E]
LCCN: 2011000662
Academic/Grade Level: Kindergarten, Ages 5-6
Book type: Easy Fiction
Physical Information: 12.00" H x 9.50" W x 0.25" (1.10 lbs)
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Contributor Bio(s): Eric Carle lives in Northampton, Massachusetts. Visit the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2012 Spring)
An artist paints animals the wrong color: a blue horse, red alligator, green lion, etc. When Carle, as we learn in an afterword, was growing up in Nazi Germany, this mixing up of natural coloration was seen as degenerate. While the book s simple, direct text and large type indicates a young audience, Carle is also making a larger, more autobiographical statement.

Reviewed by Horn Book Magazine Reviews (Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2012 #1)
In its simplest interpretation, Carle's book is about an artist -- perhaps a child, perhaps an adult -- who paints animals the "wrong" color. There is the titular blue horse, a red alligator, green lion, and even a black polar bear. Those who know Carle's work well will recognize several familiar characters in their original colors (like the blue horse from Brown Bear, Brown Bear, rev. 11/92). The lesson here, that it's okay to use colors outside the realm of nature, may be unnecessary in this day and age. But when Carle, as we learn in an afterword, was growing up in Germany during the Nazi regime, this mixing up of proper coloration was seen as degenerate. In particular, we learn about Franz Marc, who specialized in blue horses and whose paintings were among the contraband that a kind teacher introduced to young Eric. While the simple, direct text and large type of this book indicates a young audience, there's no question that Carle has created this book to make a larger, more autobiographical statement. You could even call this his Miss Rumphius: a late-career mission statement. lolly robinson

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2011 August #2)

The Blaue Reiter painter Franz Marc had his art banned by the Nazis, after he died at 36 in WWI. In his first book in more than four years, Carle does not tell Marc's story; he simply assumes his persona. "I am an artist," a mop-headed man says, "and I paint... "a blue horse and... a red crocodile and..." and the series continues, each animal dominating its spread. While Carle's creatures are constructed from his familiar, brilliantly colored painted-paper shapes, it is the strength and sinew of their forms that impresses—not coincidentally, the quality that distinguishes Marc's originals (two are reprinted on the final pages). As the book progresses, the colors of the animals stray farther and farther from reality (there's a purple fox and a polka-dot donkey), all but daring readers to think outside the box. "I am a good artist," the man declares in closing, expressing the satisfaction that comes from using one's creative powers to the fullest. An homage to Marc becomes testimony to Carle's gifts, too. A short afterword about Marc's life is included. Ages 3–5. (Oct.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2011 PWxyz LLC

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2011 October)

PreS-Gr 2—Carle has constructed full-page images of animals in creative colors, beginning with a blue horse and culminating with a polka-dot donkey. The text begins, "I am an artist and I paint…" with each page displaying a different animal labeled with its name and color. The artist appears very pleased with his cheerful creations. Each page turn reveals one remarkable creature after another, and children will be filled with anticipation and surprise as they follow along. A concluding note explains that the artist in the book was inspired by Franz Marc, whose work, like that of other "degenerate artists," was banned by the Nazi regime. A reproduction of Marc's Horse and Yellow Cow is included. Carle's collages include brightly painted papers, custom cut and assembled to represent imaginative, childlike images. Adults will appreciate the connection between Carle and Marc while children will savor the simplicity and predictability of this book. Another masterpiece from a master artist.—Diane Antezzo, Ridgefield Library, CT

[Page 102]. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.