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|Grant and Tillie go walking|
Author: Kulling, Monica
Grant Wood believed that to be a real artist, he had to live in Paris. But once he got there, he realized that to be a great painter he needed to return to the people and places-and even animals-that he knew and loved the best. Inspired by the life of American artist Grant Wood.
Kirkus Reviews (07/01/15)
School Library Journal (10/01/15)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 10/01/2015 K-Gr 2—In a fictional tale inspired by Grant Wood, the painter of American Gothic, Tillie, a cow, longs for her companion when he goes to Paris to study under the masters. When Europe proves to be a disappointment, the artist returns home to paint the things he loves, to the delight of his cow. The simple text reads aloud easily, and the horizontal format captures the rolling hillsides of the Iowa countryside. The impressionistic speckles of Smith's illustrations come from his use of a toothbrush and combine well with the soft shapes of watercolor and ink. Although the bold stenciled outlines of his shapes vaguely recall Wood's style, their dreamlike tints and subtle texture is no substitute (nor are they intended to be) for the heroism of Wood's exaggerated curves, strong colors, and bird's-eye perspective. The simple story is written as if it were a true account of events. An author's note addresses the embellishments and made-up bits, but the tender message to draw inspiration from the things you love still holds true in this mixture of fact and fiction. VERDICT This appealing, if slightly sentimental, introduction to the artist and his work will be a useful resource for art teachers and the creatively inclined.—Erin Reilly-Sanders, University of Wisconsin-Madison, WI - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.