Max, a garden-variety lizard, asks Art, a horned lizard, what he should paint. Art tells Max that he may paint him (Art), never dreaming that Max would take a brush to Art’s own scaly skin! Art busts out of Max’s paint and there, beneath, are…pastels. Are there more layers to Art? All the previous books by the three-time Caldecott Medalist were rendered in watercolor, and David Wiesner wanted to do something different. “I thought about what other media I could use—acrylics, pastel, ink line,” he says. “Suddenly, I saw a narrative involving all those media in which one character is deconstructed. It’s the story of the creative process.” Dinah Stevenson, Wiesner’s editor and vice president and publisher of Clarion Books, says, “Referring to a picture book about lizards as autobiographical may sound farfetched, but Art & Max is really about the adventure of becoming an artist, and David has had that experience.”
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Art & Max
Clarion / October / 9780618756636 / $17.99 / ages 5-8