THE PAINT BOX by Maxine Trottier


by & illustrated by
Age Range: 7 - 10
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The Venetian Renaissance painter Tintoretto had a daughter named Marietta, whom he dressed in boy’s clothing so she could accompany him freely. In this story, Marietta loves her father’s gift of a box of paints, brushes, and chalks. A sea captain comes to Tintoretto to have his portrait painted, and Marietta notices the captain’s slave boy, Piero, sketching on the street below. The two discover their mutual delight in drawing, but Marietta realizes that Piero will never have a chance to be an artist if he sets sail again. So she gives him her paint box and her boat so he can return to his family. East’s beautiful paintings range from near-photographic representations of the streets and canals of Venice to dreamlike visions where Marietta and Piero’s faces glow in a luminous landscape of ships, flora, and fauna. Piero is an invention, but Marietta was real, an accomplished artist who died in childbirth at age 34. A fanciful and romantic story, vibrantly painted, providing children an opportunity to think about the making of art, the making of gender roles, and the making of history. (author’s note) (Picture book. 7-10)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2003
ISBN: 1-55041-801-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Fitzhenry & Whiteside
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 2003


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