Covered in Color: Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s Fabrics of Freedom

Abrams. Aug. 2022. 48p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781419756115.
PreS-Gr 3–This is the story of two 20th-century artists who created artwork on a truly massive scale; they used huge pieces of fabric to wrap buildings to create colorful, beautiful, gigantic art. Their story of life, love, and art is illustrated by Chapman, who captures the beauty, movement, and scale of the partners’ creations in sweeping scenes. Boxer’s storytelling weaves neatly into the artwork, mirroring, perhaps, the democratic and equitable relationship between the two artists and romantic partners. The story starts with Christo’s childhood during World War II and explores how those early years of hardship and trauma are part of what made Christo the artist he became, following his path across the globe, to meeting Jeanne-Claude, to their collaborative process. Over the course of the book, readers learn of the obstacles, rejections, and successes of Christo and Jeanne-Claude, in accessible prose and dynamic artwork. Back matter includes an author’s note and an artist’s note, as well as sources for further research.
VERDICT The scale of the creations alone make for interesting study; young readers will be enthralled by the thinking and planning that went along with these massive undertakings.

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