In a nutshell, The Art of Maurice Sendak
is simply stunning. Page after page of lavish full-color illustrations and black-and-whites from one of America's best-loved children's artists adorn this hefty volume. Sendak, best known for the charming and timeless Where the Wild Things Are
, never fails to amuse and astonish with his creative wizardry. He was talented from the cradle, and his early works from the 1940s are given due recognition here--reflecting his fascination with the small intricacies of being human, and his devilish sense of humor. Even a stuffy physics textbook from 1947 is given the Sendak touch, as atoms, molecules, and chain reactions take on the form of people jiving and swinging. Always the artistic adventurer, Sendak experiments with many different forms--from the fairy-tale-like pen-and-ink drawings of Higglety Pigglety Pop!
to the beautiful watercolor pieces that illustrate Mr. Rabbit and the Lovely Present
. Virtually every page contains another Sendak gem--be it a quick sketch, an exquisite portrait of his mother or sister, or the preliminary drawings from Where the Wild Things Are
. Three huge fold-outs make for an extra-special treat.
The book's rich text is exemplary--based on interviews, conversations, and extensive research by Sendak's close friend Selma Lanes. The author invites us into the very special world of Maurice Sendak, a place of fantasies and wonderment, a land where adults can be children--and never grow up. --Naomi Gesinger