Review Blog

Sep 16 2019

Dr Seuss's Horse Museum by Dr. Seuss, illus. by Andrew Joyner

cover image

Puffin, 2019. ISBN: 9780241425725.
(Age: All) Highly recommended. Themes: Art history. With the words, 'A canter through art history' on the front cover the reader is well aware of the topic of the book and will discover what art is and how artists have represented horses though the ages. The book is based on a manuscript and notes by Dr Seuss that was recently uncovered, and Andrew Joyner has brought together iconic figures from Dr Seuss's book as well as his own engaging illustrations.
A definition of what is art is given right at the beginning and the young reader is told to look at some of the different ways that artists have represented horses in their work. They are instructed to
Look it over
Think it over.
Talk it over.

From then on the book explores work from prehistoric times, and ancient Chinese culture and many, many artists like Picasso, Manet, Magritte, Pollock and names that aren't as familiar, Katsushika Hokusai, Marino Marini, and Rosa Bonheur. As the children look at the paintings they also learn about the kind of art they represent, like Realism, Impressionism, and Surrealism. There is plenty of humour in the illustrations to keep the young reader engaged and older readers who have an interest in art will be fascinated by this easy to understand tour through art history, instantly recognising some of the more famous horse paintings and being intrigued by others.
The back of the book contains images of the works and information about the artists, with the time period that the artist was alive. Notes from the publisher discuss Dr. Seuss' lifetime interest in art and Andrew Joyner's approach to illustrating the book. Teacher's notes are available to download.
This would be an excellent addition to any library and would make a fabulous gift for any child who is interested in art.
Pat Pledger

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