|Beautiful shades of brown : the art of Laura Wheeler Waring|
Author: Churnin, Nancy
Growing up in the late 19th century, Laura Wheeler Waring didn't see any artists who looked like her. She didn't see any paintings of people who looked like her, either. So when she was offered a commission to paint portraits of accomplished African Americans, she jumped at the chance. Writers, singers, political activists, and thinkers all posed for her. Now her portraits hang in Washington, D.C.'s National Portrait Gallery.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 4.80
Points: .5 Quiz: 509571
Kirkus Reviews (12/01/19)
School Library Journal (02/01/20)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 02/01/2020 Gr 1–4—Laura Wheeler Waring (1887–1948) combined colors to create the exact shades of brown that depicted the skin tones of the loved ones she painted. Artistic representation during the time period Waring came of age was far from inclusive. Portraits of African Americans and artwork created by black artists were not welcomed into museums. Waring pursued her passion and was eventually commissioned to paint important African American people for a traveling exhibit that displayed her art in the Smithsonian and other museums. This biography succeeds by keeping its focus on Waring's artistic journey. When discussing her portrait of singer Marian Anderson, Churnin forms an emotional link between these two women and spotlights the potential for their work to break barriers. The straightforward narrative allows young readers to connect with Waring as a person, recognize her dedication to her craft, and appreciate her accomplishments. The recurring theme of brown as a complex and beautiful color is an effective metaphor for the celebration of African American people and culture central to Waring's work. Marshall's painted illustrations are an artistic tribute rendered in the style of Waring's paintings. VERDICT A meticulously crafted account of a trailblazing artist. Recommended for general purchase, particularly for libraries looking to include more biographies of black women artists.—Elizabeth Lovsin, Deerfield Public Library, IL - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.