Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Cave Paintings to Picasso

Cave Paintings to Picasso

Henry M. Sayre
For ages 6 and up
Chronicle, 2004   ISBN: 978-0811837675

Art has a history which goes back to the beginning of time. Even when man was living in caves and surviving by following mammoth herds, man felt the need to express himself through pictures and sculpture. In this beautifully presented and superbly written book the author takes his readers back to the year 22,000 B.C. Someone, at this time created a lovely little figure of a woman’s head. It was carved out of mammoth ivory and though it is very small, it has great significance. In the text the author tells us what kind of person may have made the figure and what it might have meant to its creator.

Next we are shown a famous picture of some cave paintings which early man put on the wall of a cave in what is now the country of France. Did you know that the paintings were created by using colored clay and that four boys were the ones to discover the paintings when they were out playing one day?

This historical journey into the world of art is arranged in chronological order with the oldest pieces of art being described first and the newest creations coming last in the book. On each page we are shown a new piece of art and for each one we are able to read its story and appreciate its place in the big picture. A timeline runs down the side of the pages showing us when the artwork on that particular page was created.

Fifty pieces of art of all kinds from all over the world fills these pages and there can be no doubt that when the reader finishes the book he or she will have a very real sense of how the world of art grew, developed, and changed over time.