Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Ezra Jack Keats at the Contemporary Jewish Museum

I found out via Apartment Therapy that Ezra Jack Keats, the illustrator of Snowy Day, Peter's Chair and Whistle for Willie, will have a show of his illustrations at the Contemporary Jewish Museum.

An illustration from Ezra Jack Keats' The Snowy Day. [Image: an African American kid in a red snowsuit stands in a mound of snow in front of an orange, pink and yellow wall and stoplight. It has a mod 1950s jazzy collage look like West Side Story.]

In high school I interned with an ESL (English as a Second Language) class at my former elementary school and spent a lot of time reading aloud from my old favorites from the library. I appreciated The Snowy Day much more as an adult than as a kid, especially since I resented stories about winter as it never snowed much in my home town. I wonder if this book was part of the inspiration behind the Rhapsody in Blue cartoon in the new Fantasia?

Three stills from Disney's Fantasia's Rhapsody in Blue. [Image: cartoon men in front of cityscapes in monotone color pallets]

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