Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My Heart Is Like a Zoo by Michael Hall

A good friend was angry and appalled when her daughter was forbidden by an art teacher to use hearts in an art project. She was told that hearts do not make for serious art. My friend's reaction (in addition to giving the teacher a piece of her mind) was to create a fabulous poem about heart shapes found in nature. That incident was also the catalyst for my sweetie's series of abstract paintings of hearts.

It's unlikely that graphic artist Michael Hall ever met that particular art teacher, but his first picture book could also be a rebuttal. Using bright colours and hundreds of heart shapes, Hall writes about the human gamut of feelings and emotions. Whether "happy as a herd of hippos drinking apple juice" or "gloomy as a lone coyote walking in the fog," Hall's animals are created almost entirely from overlapping hearts. Absolutely charming. Preschool and up.

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