Studies show that art and creativity are important parts of early childhood education and beyond, but art programs are being cut in elementary schools all the time. To make sure kids get the early exposure they need to art, they should read art books at home and at school. And even if you don’t learn anything, art is fun. The following is a list of children’s books about art that aren’t how-to books. Instead, these books are about art appreciation and show how important art is. Book Riot also has some suggestions for books that teach you how to do art.
Children’s Books About Art
My Art Book Of Love By Shana Gozansky
You can see famous paintings for little artists in this board book, as well as simple words that describe love. Gozansky gives each piece a title and an artist. Here are the pages that my daughter likes best in the book. Also check out My Art Book of Sleep, which is part of the same series. My Art Book of Happiness will be out in May 2020.
Art This Way By Tamara Shopsin And Jason Fulford (November 18, 2019)
There are lift the flaps, foldout pages, cutouts, and more in this interactive board book for little hands to play with. They help them learn about famous works of art.
My Forest Is Green By Darren Lebeuf, Illustrated By Ashley Barron
This book is great for kids who live in cities. This is how it works: A boy walks through his nearby urban forest looking for art materials. He then makes beautiful collages with what he finds. People of all ages can do the same thing by going to nearby parks or going outside in their own yards. I love the appreciation of both art and nature, and the illustrations are vibrant and green, as they should be!
Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat By Javaka Steptoe
For example, I love when the illustrations for an artist’s picture book biography use the same techniques that they used to make the art. This is the case here. Jean-Michel Basquiat is one of the best modern artists I’ve ever seen, and I love his work (he died in 1988). His art used everything that was available to make works that stretched the imagination and often spoke out about social issues. This picture book won the Coretta Scott King Award in 2017 and is a must-read for kids.
The Iridescence Of Birds By Patricia Maclachlan, Illustrated By Hadley Hooper
In this picture book, it says, “If you were a boy named Henri Matisse, this book would tell you how he became an artist.” It’s a quick, easy read that’s full of color and lovely illustrations. It shows how important it is for a child to have supportive parents and a lot of color and creativity in their lives.
Bob Ross And Peapod The Squirrel By Robb Pearlman, Illustrated By Bob Ross And Jason Kayser
In the end, there’s a brief introduction to Bob Ross for young readers and artists. Peapod is a squirrel who needs a place to live. For Peapod’s benefit, Bob is an artist who has a blank painting. With a little paintbrush magic and a few happy accidents, Bob Ross makes Peapod’s home.
Maybe Something Beautiful: How Art Transformed A Neighborhood By Isabel Campoy And Theresa Howell
One of the things this picture book is about is how people can work together to make art. Mira is in the middle of gray gray gray. While painting a colorful mural, she and an artist start to get help from all of the people in the neighborhood who want to help.
It Began With A Page: How Gyo Fujikawa Drew The Way By Kyo Maclear, Illustrated By Julie Morstad
Julie Morstad is one of my favorite illustrators, and she always does great work. When I first heard about this book, I knew I had to get it. At a time when most children’s books were white, Gyo Fujikawa was a Japanese American illustrator who made more than 50 children’s books with different characters. In this picture book, you’ll learn how a little girl who couldn’t stop drawing ended up becoming one of the world’s best illustrators. I had a lot of her children’s books when I was younger and didn’t know it!
My Museum By Joanne Liu
This is a beautiful picture book about a child’s first visit to an art museum and all the wonderful things he sees there. It doesn’t have any words. In this video, a boy shows how he interacts with the art and museum in very unique ways. This shows that art interpretations can be just as creative as the art itself! Because there are no words, it works as a piece of art on its own. The young reader can interpret it however they want. For an Eric Carle exhibit at our local art museum, I’ll be taking my two-year-old soon. This is the perfect book to read before and after we go.
Drawn Together By Minh Lê, Illustrated By Dan Santat
As soon as a boy is dropped off at the house of his grandfather, he feels lonely. They don’t speak the same language. That is, until the boy starts drawing with a pencil. Together, the two realize that art doesn’t matter what language you speak. A beautiful picture book in every way.