Timeline of Artists for Picture Study

The First Steps by Millet

Bold pink type indicates artists mentioned in The Original Home Schooling Series by Charlotte M. MasonI. The Renaissance, 1300-1600

A. 14th Century, Proto-Renaissance: Duccio di Buoninsegna, Giovanni Cimabue, Giotto di Bondone, Simone Martini (Italy)

B. 15th Century: Fra Angelico, Fra Filippo Lippi, Botticelli (Italy); Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden (Flanders)

C. 16th Century, Protestant Reformation begins in Germany in 1517.

  • High Renaissance: Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael Sanzio (Santi), Michelangelo Buonarroti (Italy); Albrecht Durer, Hans Holbein (Germany); Peter Bruegel (Flanders)
  • Venetian Art: Titian, Tintoretto
  • Mannerism, 1520-1600: Jacopo da Ponte (Venice); El Greco (Spain)

II. Baroque Art, 1600-1750: Caravaggio, Giovanni Battista Gaulli (Italy); Velazquez (Spain); Gerrit Dou, Peter Paul Rubens (Flanders/Spanish Netherlands); Rembrandt, Jan Vermeer, Pieter de Hooch (Holland); Claude Lorraine (France)

III. Rococo, Early 18th Century: Antoine Watteau, Jean-Honore Fragonard, Quentin de la Tour, Jean-Baptiste-Simeon Chardin (France); William Hogarth (England)

IV. Romanticism & Neoclassicism, 1750-1850: Thomas Gainsborough, Sir Joshua Reynolds, William Blake, George Stubbs [horses], Joseph Mallord William Turner, John Constable (England); Jacques Louis David, Eugene Delacroix, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (France); Benjamin West, Gilbert Stuart, John James Audubon, {Hudson River School: Thomas Cole, Frederic Church, Jasper Francis Cropsey, Thomas Doughty, Asher Brown Durand, John Frederick Kensett}, George Caleb Bingham (USA); Goya (Spain)

V. Realism, 1850-1900

A. Transition: Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, Jean Francois Millet, Honore Daumier (France), Jozef Israels (Holland)

B. Realism Established: Gustave Courbet, James Jacques Joseph Tissot, Gustave Doré, (France); Sir Edwin Landseer (England); John Singer Sargent, Winslow Homer, Thomas Eakins, Frederic Remington & Charles Marion Russell [cowboys & Indians] (USA)

C. Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood: John Everett Millais, William Holman Hunt (England)

D. Impressionism: Claude Monet, Sisley, Pissarro, Auguste Renoir, Edgar Degas (France); Mary Cassatt, James Abbott McNeill Whistler, William Merritt Chase (USA)

E. Post-Impressionists: Georges Seurat, Paul Cezanne, Vincent van Gogh, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (France); Gari Melchers (USA)

VI. 20th Century

A. Symbolism: Edvard Munch (Norway); Henri Rousseau (France); Albert Pinkman Ryder (USA)

B. Fauves: Georges Rouault [Christian who returned to style of art of the early Church], Matisse, Dufy, Derain(France)

C. German Expressionism: Kathe Kollwitz [themes of mother protecting child, human suffering], Emil Nolde [Biblical themes]

D. Cubism: Pablo Picasso [early work before cubism phase is realistic and highly skilled] (Spain)

E. Social Realism & Commentary: Norman Rockwell, Grant Wood, Edward Hopper (USA)

F. Realism: NC Wyeth, Andrew Wyeth, Jamie Wyeth.

G. Folk Art: Grandma Moses

VII. 21st Century Artists of Special Interest to Families

  • Trisha Romance, Canadian. Good artist to study because of the influence of her family and faith on her art. Beautiful paintings of parents reading to children, family life, etc. Autobiography and prints at: www.artistsgarden.com
  • Al Young, Elspeth Young, American. Father and daughter whose art is inspired by literature. Elspeth’s series of women in the Bible is lovely. Their art, along with excellent book reviews and family reading list at: www.alyoung.com
  • Donna Green, American. Paintings of children at play and beautiful book illustrations. www.donnagreen.com
  • Ben Long, American. Frescos. Chapel of the Prodigal at Montreat College near Black Mountain, NC is open to public. Call 828-669-8012 x3820 for information about free tours. Has also done frescos in Charlotte and West Jefferson.

Compiled by Beth S., 2004 – 2007

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Timeline of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture

This outline of key artists is based on Gardner’s Art Through the Ages and there is no need, or is it desirable, to study each artist listed. Choose only a few your family likes.

I. Ancient Times: Cave paintings; sculpture, painting, & architecture of the Near East, Israel, Egypt, Greece, & Rome
II. Early Christian, Byzantine, & Islamic Art; Art of India, China, Japan, Africa, the South Pacific, & the Americas

III. The Middle Ages, 400-1400 AD: Early Medieval Art, Romanesque Art, Gothic Art

IV. The Renaissance, 1300-1600

 A. 14th Century, Proto-Renaissance: Duccio, Cimabue, Giotto, Simone Martini, the Lorenzetti brothers (Italy); Sluter, the Limbourg Brothers (Flanders); Pucelle (Parisian illuminator)

B. 15th Century: Donatello, Brunelleschi, Michelozzo, Massaccio, Fra Angelico, Fra Filippo Lippi, Alberti, Giuliano, Desiderio, Verrocchio, Ghirlandaio, Botticelli, Mantegna, Antonello (Italy); Jan Van Eyck, Van Der Weyden, Van Der Goes (Flanders)

C. 16th Century, Protestant Reformation begins in Germany in 1517.

  • Venetian Art: Sansovino, Palladio, Bellini, Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese
  • High Renaissance: Leonardo da Vinci, Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo, Correggio (Italy); Grunewald, Durer, Hans Holbein (Germany); Bruegel (Flanders); Lescot (France); Machuca, Herrera (Spain)
  • Mannerism, 1520-1600: Pontormo, Parmigianino, Bronzino, Giulio (Italy); Clouet, Pilon (France); El Greco (Spain)

V. Baroque Art, 1600-1750: Bernini, Borromini, Guarini, Caravaggio (Italy); Velazquez (Spain); Rubens (Flanders/Spanish Netherlands); Frans Hals, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Ruisdael (Holland); Georges de la Tour, Le Nain, Callot, Poussin, Claude Lorraine, Mansart, Perrault, Le Vau, Le Brun, Hardouin-Mansart (France); Christopher Wren (England)

VI. Rococo, Early 18th Century: Juvara, Tiepolo (Italy); Vanbrugh, Kent, Hogarth (England); Boffrand, Cuvillies, Watteau, Boucher, Fragonard, de la Tour, Chardin (France)

VII. Romanticism & Neoclassicism, 1750-1850: Walpole, Stuart, Adam, Gainsborough, Reynolds, William Blake, Barry & Pugin, John Nash, Turner, Constable (England); Piranesi (Italy); Soufflot, Houdon, Elizabeth-Louise Vigee-Lebrun, Greuze, Jacques Louis David, Vignon, Barye, Anne Louis Girodet-Trioson, Gericault, Delacroix, Ingres (France); Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin West, Horatio Greenough, Thomas Cole, Frederick Church, Jasper Francis Cropsey, George Caleb Bingham (USA); Goya (Spain)

VIII. Realism, 1850-1900

A. Transition: Corot, Millet, Daumier (France) 

B. Realism Established: Courbet, Manet, Tissot, Rosa Bonheur, Bastien-Lepage, Doré, Rodin, Labrouste, Eiffel (France); Leibl (Germany); Ilya Repin (Russia); Paxton (England); Eakins, Sargent, Homer, Richardson, Sullivan, Remington (USA)

C. Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood: Millais, Burne-Jones, John Ruskin/critic, William Morris (England)

D. Impressionism: Monet, Sisley, Pissarro, Renoir, Degas (France); Mary Cassatt, Whistler, William Merritt Chase (USA)

E. Post-Impressionists: Seurat, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Toulouse-Lautrec (France); Gari Melchers (USA)

IX. 20th Century Before WWII

A. Symbolism: Klimt (Austria); Munch (Norway); Rousseau (France); Ryder (USA)

B. Arts & Crafts Movement, Art Nouveau, Art Deco (Decorative Arts & Graphics): William Morris (England); Horta (Belgium); Gaudi (Spain)

C. Fauves: Matisse, Derain, Rouault (France)

D. German Expressionism, “The Bridge” (unites nature & emotion): Kokoschka, Nolde, Beckmann, Grosz, Kathe Kollwitz, Barlach

E. German Expressionism, “The Blue Rider” (concerned with emotions, eliminates representational elements): Kandinsky (Russia)

F. Cubism: Picasso [early work is realistic & highly skilled] (Spain); Braque, Leger, Duchamp (France); Lepchitz (Poland); Archipenko (Russia); Boccioni

G. Abstractions: Mondrian (Holland); Georgia O’Keeffe (USA); Malevich (Russia); Brancusi (Romania); Henry Moore (England)

H. Constructivism: Pevsner, Gabo, Vantongerloo, Tatlin (Russia); Calder [mobiles] (USA)

I. Dada (nonart after WWI, felt European culture had lost meaning): Duchamp (French); Schwitters (Germany); Man Ray (USA)

J. Surrealism (concerned with the subconscious): De Chirico (Italy); Ernst (USA); Miro, Dali (Spain); Chagall (Russia); Klee (Switzerland)

K. Social Realism & Commentary: Norman Rockwell, Ben Shahn, Grant Wood, Edward Hopper (USA); Siqueiros, Orozco, Rivera (Mexico)

L. International Style of Architecture: Wright, Mies Van Der Rohe, Pei (USA); Le Corbusier (Switzerland); Rietveldt (Holland); Gropius (Germany)

X. 20th Century after WWII

A. Expressionism, Figural & Abstract: Bacon (England); Hoffman, Pollock, Kline, De Kooning, Rothko (USA)

B. Realism: Andrew Wyeth, Norman Rockwell (USA); Iltners (Russia). Photo Realism: Richard Estes (USA)

C. Abstract Formalism: Stuart Davis, Ellsworth Kelly, Bridget Riley, David Smith, Louise Nevelson, Donald Judd, Robert Smithson (USA)

D. Pop Art: Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Christo (USA)

Compiled by Beth S. 2004

 
 

 

Art Appreciation

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things. 
Philippians 4:6-8

Beautifully illustrated children’s literature is a wonderful starting place for fostering an appreciation for good art. It is fun to have your children compare and contrast how different artists interpret the same poem or story. Scribner Illustrated Classics by Simon & Schuster Publishers and The Illustrated Children’s Library (formerly Children’s Classics by Dilithium Press) by Random House Value Publishing are both excellent series which feature color illustrations from history’s top illustrators. These lovely, quality books are worth collecting. Listed below are a just a few of the fine illustrators you may wish to seek when selecting books.     

Illustrators of Yesteryear: Randolph Caldecott, Kate Greenaway, N.C. Wyeth, Jessie Willcox Smith, Bessie Pease Gutmann, Arthur Rackman, Milo Winter     

Illustrators of Today: Donna Green, Trina Schart Hyman, Ernest H. Shepard, Eric Kincaid, Michael Hauge, Greg Hildebrandt, Louis Slobodkin, Leo & Diane Dillon, Susan Jeffers, Wesley Dennis, Ruth Sanderson     

Author/Illustrators: Tasha Tudor, Margurite DeAngeli, C.W. Anderson, Garth Williams, Howard Pyle, Lucy Fitch Perkins, Lois Lenski, Elizabeth Enright, Holling C. Holling, James Daugherty, Genevieve Foster, Robert McCloskey, Robert Lawson, Ezra Jack Keats, Virginia Lee Burton, Patrica Polacco, Aliki, Dr. Seuss, Richard Scarry, Beatrix Potter, David Macauly, Thomas Locker, Taro Yashima, Mitsumasa Anno, Peter Spier, Piero Ventura, Tomie DePaola, H.A. Rey, Jan Brett, Lauren Mills, Allen Say, Maud & Miska Petersham, Alice & Martin Provensen, Ingri & Parin D’Aulaire, Maria Sewall, Margaret Early, Diane Stanley, Robert Subuda, Edwin Tunis, Eric Sloane   

Picture Study

Inexpensive postcards, art prints, posters, books, catalogs of touring shows, and calendars are available from museums and are great for picture study in the Charlotte Mason fashion. Some libraries have poster-size prints you can check out, as well as oversized art books. An amazing amount of information and images come up when you do a “Google” search for a particular artist and/or painting title (then click on “images” in the upper left of the screen), perhaps the easiest way to find six works by a single artist if a book is not available at your public library. Here’s references to information on how some of today’s home educators incorporate picture study and what Miss Mason herself wrote about it, including titles of paintings and names of artists.    

The Original Home Schooling Series by Charlotte M. Mason, vol. 1: 48-51; 307-314 (Millet’s Sower, Angelus; Fitzroy’s Four Seasons; Jean Richter’s picture-books for children, Unser Vater, Sontag, etc.; Landseer’s Alexander & Diogenes; George Harrow’s original illustration of Beowulf in Heroes of Chivalry & Romance; Sir Joshua Reynolds); vol. 2: 71, 262; vol. 3: 238-239; vol. 4, book II: 102-103 (Fra Angelico, Giotto, Millet, Rembrandt); vol. 6: 14, 43 (Israels’ Pancake Woman, Children by the Sea; Millet’s Feeding the Birds, First Steps, Angelus; Rembrandt’s Night Watch, The Supper at Emmaus; Velasquez’s Surrender of Breda); 45 (Van Eyck’s Adoration of the Lamb, Botticelli’s Spring); 63 (De Hooch, Rembrandt, Botticelli); 214-217 (Constable, Rembrandt, De Hooch, Corot’s Evening), 275 (Velasqeuz).   

  • A Charlotte Mason Primer by Cindy Rushton, pages 82-84.
  •  A Charlotte Mason Companion by Karen Andreola, pages 189-197.
  • A Charlotte Mason Education by Catherine Levison, pages 47-49.
  • Charlotte Mason Study Guide by Penny Gardner, pages 122-129.
  • Educating the WholeHearted Child by Clay & Sally Clarkson, pages 112, 121. 

 The following links feature some helpful articles about Charlotte Mason’s method of doing picture study:  

    

Special Museums to Visit

How fortunate we are to have the Mint Museum in Charlotte with free admission for home educators during school hours! Each of my children collect postcards of their favorite paintings when we visit a museum. This is a habit my own parents instilled in me, and provides a wonderful way to help keep memories alive! When they were young we visited the Mint Museum about every six months and stayed no longer than an hour, which is enough for little ones, taking advantage of free admission on Tuesdays after 5pm. One time Rosy, at age 5, and Luke, at age 3, were mesmerized by a large piece, “The Adoration of Saint Joan.” Their Grandmother had given them a children’s video about Joan of Arc the day before, so they understood the story and kept returning to this panel, sitting on the floor staring at it. This interest led to us reading two biographies on Joan. Two years later, a missionary from Mexico visited their Sunday school class and asked if only grown-ups could be missionaries. Rosy responded, “God can use children. Look how He called Joan of Arc and she obeyed.” Oh, the impact of great art and great books! J   

National Gallery, Washington, DC; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC; The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY; The Frick Collection, NYC (old masters housed in a lovely old mansion on 5th Ave.); Reynolda House, Winston-Salem, NC (art, antique toys & clothing, bowling alley, etc. housed in the former RJ Reynolds home; fascinating); The Mint Museum of Art, Charlotte, NC; Bob Jones University Collection, Greenville, SC (an impressive collection of religious art); Folk Art Museum at Colonial Williamsburg, Williamsburg, VA; Belmont, The Gari Melchers Estate and Memorial Gallery, Fredericksburg, VA (this talented but little-known 19th century artist is a good one for families to study because his favorite subject matter was mothers and children); Cedar Grove, the home of Thomas Cole, Catskill, NY; Olana, the home of Frederic Church, Hudson, NY.

 

 Art Museums on the Internet

Whether planning a trip or wanting to look up a particular artist, painting, or era of art, the internet can be a great resource for teachers. However, you’ll want to supervise children visiting these sites; it is easy to come across material about immorality in an artist’s life or art that you may not wish to view. Listed are just a few sites to get you started.

   

Living Books for Art Appreciation

All of us are engaged daily with works of art, even if we are neither professional nor amateur artists. We read books, we listen to music, we look at posters, we admire flower arrangements. Art, as I am using the word, does not include just “high art” – that is, painting, sculpture, poetry, classical music – but also the more popular expressions – the novel, the theater, the cinema and popular music. In fact, there is a very real sense in which the Christian life itself should be our greatest work of art. Even for the great artist, the most crucial work of art is his life.
Francis Schaeffer, Art and the Bible, Chapter 2 

Art is skilled human creativity that reflects God’s truth and God’s beauty…(However,) not all art is worthy of the Christian’s contemplation and meditation…Remember the principle (from 1 Cor. 6:12; 10:23), everything is permissible but not everything is profitable…The key word to get in Phillipians 4:8 is the word ‘think’ and it is best translated as ‘to reckon’ from the Greek and has the implication of carefully reflecting on, to consider or meditate on a thing with a view of obtaining it. In other words, owning a concept. 

Jeff Baldwin, A Christian View of the Arts, 1999 NCHE Conference

The following list records some books and videos that our family has enjoyed for art appreciation. So that you will understand my comments in the reviews, please allow me to explain how our family chooses art to study. First, I want to be careful not to be judgemental, recognizing that even fellow believers share different views. These are simply the conclusions that my husband and I have arrived at for our own family. Exploring an artist’s worldview and any moral failings is best reserved for the teen years, having developed a solid basis and strong roots from which to evaluate. After prayerful consideration of Scripture (such as Gen. 9:20-27; Matt. 5:28; Phil. 4:8) and acknowledging how our Creator has beautifully designed the human body to be enjoyed in marriage, we have decided not to expose our children to nudity in art, which glorifies man rather than God. There is so much excellent art to enjoy without showing them something which could lead to a lifelong struggle, especially for our son. It is interesting to note that Michelangelo himself struggled before God over his desire to sculpt the human form, as recorded in his diary. The books listed, for the most part, are appropriate for sharing with children and we will shelter our children from the occasional objectionable material in any of our books by removing pages, painting clothing on, etc. As for trips to art museums, it has been very easy to lead them to the art we wish to view and as they get older (& taller) we will train them – after instructing them from Scripture as to the reason why – to turn their eyes away from anything not suitable, just as they would coming across magazine covers at the grocery store. Of course, this is simply our personal conviction and not something to get legalistic about. Every family will need to decide for themselves how they wish to handle this issue. 

 

Art Inspired by the Bible

The titles listed make interesting visual aids for Bible study, comparing how different artists interpret Scripture and analyzing how each uses their imagination to adhere to or deviate from a text. European artists often put Israelites in their own country’s costume and landscape because they had never traveled to the Holy Land. The Doré illustrations show a knowledge of Bible lands. 
  • Stories from the Old Testament and Stories from the New Testament with Masterwork Paintings Inspired by the Stories, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. KJV text with gorgeous paintings, each indexed in back of book with brief information about the artist.
  • Rembrandt: The Old Testament, Rembrandt: Life of Christ, and Rembrandt: The Christmas Story, Thomas Nelson Publishers. These three titles contain Biblical sketches, etchings, and paintings by Rembrandt with the accompanying passage of scripture in NKJV. An astonishing body of work!
  • The Doré Bible Illustrations: 241 Plates by Gustave Doré, Dover Publications, Inc. These powerful, amazingly detailed woodcut engravings were first published in France for an illustrated Bible in 1865 and were used in many later editions.
  • Masterpieces of the Bible by Keith J. White. Beautiful selection, but a few paintings may need editing.
  • Noah’s Ark by Rien Poortvliet. Breathtaking art that makes one marvel at the intricateness and variety of God’s creation.

 

Art History

  • God & the History of Art by Barry Stebbing, ages 10 – adult. This is an ideal combination of art history, art appreciation, and instruction in the basics of drawing, color theory, and painting. Designed to cover one lesson per week, taking five years to complete, it is a good value. Drawings by homeschooled children are included along with famous reproductions. Covering Egypt through the 20th century, the best part about this program is the emphasis on Christian artists who strived to serve and glorify God with their artwork, as distinguished from those who were merely commissioned to do religious art. There are some heartfelt, revealing quotes by artists from their writings in this material; things that are not covered in most art history texts. I am enjoying using this as a personal reference, and look forward to going through it with my children when they are ready. An inexpensive one-year program, God & Christian Artists, is also available.
  • Young People’s Story of: Fine Art 15,000 BC – 1800 AD, Fine Art the Last 200 Years, Sculpture, Architecture 3,000 BC – Gothic Period, Architecture Gothic – Modern by V.M. Hillyer & E. G. Huey. These 5 volumes are an interesting history by one of my favorite authors. Originally published as A Child’s History of Art, this edition is the 1966 reprint by Children’s Press and has color reproductions (the original edition was black-and-white), yet a few of the key pieces Hillyer writes about are not pictured, which is frustrating in an art book! However, the missing paintings can easily be found in other books. This set is out-of-print and well worth checking out through interlibrary loan. All ages.
  • Adventures in Art by David Quine. A great resource for picture study that utilizes Charlotte Mason’s method of seeing and narrating, giving worldview information (based on Francis Schaeffer’s writings) on the artists. Covers 3 paintings per artist.
  • Great Painters by Piero Ventura. The reproductions are small and about 12 may need editing. Although out-of-print, this is a good resource for teachers who are looking for a quick, easy-to-understand reference because of the definitions of art movements & chronological list of key artists in the back of the book. All ages.
  • Gardner’s Art Through the Ages. College text that makes a good teacher reference. Find used at college bookstores or Goodwill. I have the 7th edition and it gives a lot of information on how other aspects of culture influenced art without getting into scandalous aspects of the artists’ lives. There is a lot of art to edit if nudity is a concern. High school – adult. 

 

Resources for Art Appreciation

  •  Art for Children series by Ernest Raboff. Interesting biographies of famous artists teach children to look at paintings. All the titles I have read have been very appropriate for children. Very positive information about artist’s parents, childhood, and adult life.
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art What Makes a ___ a___? series by Richard Muhlberger. Beautifully done!
  •  Childcraft, Vol. 10 Art for Children (1961 edition); Vol. 13 Art and Music (1949 edition); Vol. 12 Look & Learn (1974 edition); and Vol. 13 Look Again (1974 edition). A favorite from childhood. Each edition features a different collection of fine art of interest to children.
  • The Bookshelf for Boys & Girls: Vol. 4, Pictures, Stories, & Music (1955 Edition); Vol. 6, The Story of Art & Music by Elizabeth Gutman (Art) & Ruth Goode (Music). Vol. 4 is a charming collection of paintings with helpful descriptions, sometimes from a Christian worldview, that includes many of the artists that Miss Mason mentions. Vol. 6 is an interesting narrative of the history of painting, architecture, & sculpture. We’ve edited some of the art.
  • Looking at Paintings series by Peggy Roalf (Come Look With Me series by Gladys Blizzard is similar).
  • The Glorious Impossible by Madeleine L’Engle, illustrated with frescoes from the Scrovegni Chapel by Giotto. Thought-provoking meditations on the life of Christ depicted in these frescoes. Beautiful writing and art!
  • Norman Rockwell’s Growing Up in America and Norman Rockwell’s Chronicles of America by Margaret Rockwell. Gorgeous reproductions, study sketches, photographs of the models, and fascinating recollections of the illustrator (1894-1978), relatives, and friends make these titles a joyful history of childhood, family life, and the social issues of the 20th century that are explored in Rockwell’s work. There have been many other books (and calendars) published which showcase Rockwell’s art.
  • Linnea in Monet’s Garden by Christina Bjork & Lena Anderson. Very creatively done, but best to read aloud to edit out mention of some of the scandalous aspects of Monet’s life. I also thought it strange that a little girl would travel to another country without her parents and with a male neighbor, so I refer to Mr. Bloom as “Grandpa.”
  • You Can’t Take a Balloon Into the Metropolitan Museum and You Can’t Take a Balloon Into the National Gallery by Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman & Robin Preiss Glasser. Hilarious introductions to these museums and their respective cities.
  • Treasures to See: A Museum Picture-Book by Leonard Weisgard. Good introduction to museums.
  • The Art Lesson by Tomie DePaola. Insightful picture book about an incident from this author/illustrator’s childhood.
  • The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady by Edith Holden. Lovely, inspiring example of an actual nature notebook. There is a gorgeous film of the same title which relates her life story through flashbacks as she sketches the beauty around her in the year 1906. Parents will want to preview first, as there are some things you’ll want to discuss with your children if you want them to view it. Shows the mother instructing her children to draw what they see, not what they think they see, as they draw their nature specimens sitting around the table. Excellent advice!
  • The Psalms of David with illuminations by James S. Freemantle. A labor of love as Mr. Freemantle spent 30 years lettering and illustrating this lovely volume as a gift to his wife.
  • Leonardo’s Horse by Jean Fritz, illustrated by Hudson Talbott. Good introduction to the Renaissance artist and the process of bronze sculpture.
  • The Wyeths: A Father and His Family, video by the Smithsonian. Documentary about the great children’s book illustrator, N.C. Wyeth with footage from home movies and interviews with his five talented children. As passionate as he was about his art, he put his family first, educating son Andrew at home (who became one of America’s most respected painters), nurturing his children’s talents, and having fun playing with them. This is a good one to check out of the library and watch as a family. Some profanity (Biblical terms used in a profane way) in a few of the interviews.
  • Before Five in a Row and Five in a Row are unit studies for ages 2-8 utilizing classic picture books. Contains simple suggestions for appreciating art and learning some basic art terms and techniques.

 

Artist Biographies:

  • A Passion for the Impossible: The Life of Lilias Trotter by Miriam Huffman Rockness, illustrated with the art of Lilias Trotter. A very inspiring story of the talented British artist and missionary, Isabella Lilias Trotter, 1853-1928. John Ruskin, the art critic Charlotte Mason admired, wanted to help her become one of the leading painters of the 19th c. Instead, her devotion to Christ led her to Algeria where she served the Muslim people for forty years, using her art and writing to share Christ. Her booklet Focussed inspired the hymn “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus.” High school – adult.
  • A Blossom in the Desert: Reflections of Faith in the Art & Writings of Lilias Trotter compiled and edited by Miriam Huffman Rockness. A lovely, inspiring, thought-provoking collection for all ages.
  • Butter at the Old Price by Marguerite de Angeli. Delightful autobiography of one of my favorite children’s author/illustrators.
  • Beatrix Potter: The Story of the Creator of Peter Rabbit by Elizabeth Buchan, F. Warne & Co. One of several biographies on Potter written for all ages, this is more positive about her childhood. There is also an inspiring documentary (part of PBS’s middle of the night children’s literature series) about this author/illustrator, whose artistic talents flourished while being educated by a tutor at home. The film Miss Potter, while partly fictionalized, is a beautiful delight!
  • Giotto Tended the Sheep by Opal Wheeler. An excellent biography of 14th c. Italian painter of Biblical scenes. Also wrote Millet Tilled the Soil.
  • Leonardo DaVinci and Michelangelo by Diane Stanley. Beautiful picture book biographies of these Italian Renaissance artists.
  • The Boy Who Loved to Draw: Benjamin West by Barbara Brenner, illustrated by Olivier Dunrea. Picture book of the early American artist.
  • Benjamin West and His Cat Grimalkin by Marguerite Henry, illustrated by Wesley Dennis. More about the Quaker artist.
  • Jessie Willcox Smith: American Illustrator by Edward D. Nudelman. Great artist of childhood & mothers with children, 1863-1935.

Books about Tasha Tudor: The celebrated author/illustrator of children’s books was truly a “Renaissance” woman whose creativity overflowed into so many areas: cooking; gardening; handcrafts; making toys, games, and dolls for her children. Her 1830’s lifestyle was a work of art in itself.

  • Drawn from New England: Tasha Tudor by Bethany Tudor. Intriguing biography of one of my favorite illustrators written lovingly by her daughter. All ages.
  • The Private World of Tasha Tudor by Tasha Tudor & Richard Brown. Beautifully photographed look at a year on Mrs. Tudor’s Vermont farm, her glorious gardens, endearing art, and fascinating 1830’s lifestyle. Delightful, humorous quotes.
  • Tasha Tudor’s Garden and Tasha Tudor’s Heirloom Crafts by Tovah Martin, illustrated by Tasha Tudor, photographs by Richard Brown. Gorgeous!!!
  • Tasha Tudor’s Dollhouse: A Lifetime in Miniature and Forever Christmas by Harry Davis.
  • Tasha Tudor’s Cookbook written & illustrated by Tasha Tudor. Yummy!
  • The Art of Tasha Tudor by Harry Davis. This biography answered my questions about Mrs. Tudor and shows how her parents’ marriage and divorce affected her life. The author, like many of us, has a lifelong respect and admiration for the artist and her work. Good for high school – adult.
  •  

Compiled by Beth S., 1998 – 2010

Living Books for Picture Study

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true,…honest,…just,…pure,…lovely…of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

    Philippians 4:8

There are always those present with us whom God whispers in the ear, through whom He sends a direct message to the rest. Among these messengers are the great painters who interpret to us some of the meanings of life. To read their messages aright is a thing due from us. But this, like other good gifts, does not come by nature. It is the reward of humble, patient study. It is not in a day or a year that Fra Angelico will tell us of the beauty of holiness, that Giotto will confide his interpretation of the meaning of life, that Millet will tell us of the simplicity and dignity that belong to labor on the soil, that Rembrandt will show us the sweetness of humanity in many a commonplace countenance.Ourselves, Book 2 Self-Direction, (Vol. 4) by Charlotte Mason, page 102

How do we prepare a child, again, to use the aesthetic sense with which he appears to come provided? His education should furnish him with whole galleries of mental pictures, pictures by great artists old and new; – [Jozef] Israels’ “Pancake Woman,” his “Children by the Sea;” Millet’s “Feeding the Birds,” “First Steps,”“Angelus;” Rembrandt’s “Night Watch,” “The Supper at Emmaus;” Velasquez’s “Surrender of Breda,” – in fact, every child should leave school with at least a couple of hundred pictures by great masters hanging permanently in the halls of his imagination, to say nothing of great buildings, sculpture, beauty of form and colour in things he sees. Perhaps we might secure at least a hundred lovely landscapes too, – sunsets, cloudscapes, star-light nights. At any rate he should go forth well furnished because imagination has the property of magical expansion, the more it holds the more it will hold.

Children should learn pictures, line by line, group by group, by reading, not books, but pictures themselves…After a short story of the artist’s life and a few sympathetic words about his trees or his skies, his river-paths or his figures, the little pictures are studied one at a time…taking in every detail. Then the picture is turned over and the children tell what they have seen…In this way children become acquainted with a hundred, or hundreds, of great artists during their schoollife and it is an intimacy which never forsakes them. Towards a Philosophy of Education (Vol. 6) by Charlotte Mason, pages 43, 214-215

Living Books for Art Appreciation: These are my “very best favorites” for reading about the lives of artists and understanding their times and paintings. Some are out-of-print but well worth finding through interlibrary loan. AmblesideOnline.org has schedules for artists & picture studies.

Young People’s Story of: Fine Art 15,000 BC – 1800 AD, Fine Art the Last 200 Years, Sculpture, Architecture 3,000 BC – Gothic Period, Architecture Gothic – Modern by V.M. Hillyer & E. G. Huey. These 5 volumes are such a delightful, memorable history by one of my favorite authors for children. We use these a lot and my children enjoy narrating from them. Originally published as A Child’s History of Art (which I think I recently saw at Growing Scholars, so it must be back in print, hurrah!) this edition is the 1966 reprint by Children’s Press and has color reproductions (the original edition was black-and-white), yet a few of the key pieces Hillyer writes about are not pictured, which is frustrating in an art book. However, the missing paintings can easily be found in other books. Great for all ages.

Adventures in Art by David Quine, Cornerstone Curriculum. A great resource for picture study that utilizes Charlotte Mason’s method of seeing and narrating, giving worldview information (based on Francis Schaeffer’s writings) on the artists. Covers 3 paintings per artist. You can purchase the quality art prints for this guide from Cornerstone which is the easiest way to lay out the prints and compare, but you can also find the prints in library books or online. Art for Children series by Ernest Raboff. Interesting biographies of famous artists teach children to look at paintings. All the titles I have read have been appropriate for children. Contains very positive information about each artist’s parents, childhood, and adult life.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art What Makes a ___ a___? series by Richard Muhlberger. Looks at an artist’s style & group of works; beautifully done!

God & the History of Art by Barry Stebbing, ages 10 – adult. This is an ideal combination of art history, art appreciation, and instruction in thebasics of drawing, color theory, and painting. Covering Egypt through the 20th century, the best part about this program is the emphasis on Christian artists who strived to serve and glorify God with their artwork, as distinguished from those who were merely commissioned to do religious art. There are some heartfelt, revealing quotes by artists from their writings in this material; things that are not covered in most art history texts. A joy! An inexpensive one-year program, God & Christian Artists, is also available.

The Bookshelf for Boys & Girls: Vol. 4, Pictures, Stories, & Music (1955 Edition); Vol. 6, The Story of Art & Music by Elizabeth Gutman (Art) & Ruth Goode (Music). Vol. 4 is a charming collection of paintings with helpful descriptions, sometimes from a Christian worldview, that includes many of the artists that Miss Mason mentions. Vol. 6 is an interesting narrative of the history of painting, architecture, and sculpture. We’ve edited some of the art.

Childcraft, Vol. 13 Art and Music (1949 edition); Vol. 10 Art for Children (1961 edition); Vol. 12 Look & Learn (1974 edition); and Vol. 13 Look Again (1974 edition). A favorite from childhood. Each edition features a different collection of fine art of interest to children.

Giotto Tended the Sheep by Opal Wheeler. An excellent biography of 14th c. Italian painter of Biblical scenes. Also wrote Millet Tilled the Soil.

The Glorious Impossible by Madeleine L’Engle, illustrated with frescoes from the Scrovegni Chapel by Giotto. Thought-provoking meditations on the life of Christ depicted in these frescoes. Beautiful writing and art!

Compiled by Beth S., February 2007

[Category Picture Study]

A great resource for free, online living books

My girls and I were looking at Masters of Art: Rembrandt and
> Seventeeth-Century Holland, a beautiful, large book and one that is very
> resourceful (kind of like a DK book). I found myself in need of a living
> story book, however, that could be narrated easily. I turned to my good old
> standby http://www.mainlesson.com <http://www.mainlesson.com/> and found exactly
> what we needed. I typed in Rembrandt under the “Google” search on the home
> page and found a living story. Be sure and check out this wonderful, FREE
> resource with over 500 books/stories that were published before 1923. You
> can type in something specific or sort it by genre. Be sure and read the
> Introduction subtitle “About Us.” There is an endearing story about the
> family who makes these books available to us. By the way, printed copies of
> these online books are also available at Growing Scholars.
>
> FYI,
>
> Tina