Wideness and Wonder: The Life and Art of Georgia O’Keeffe

Wideness & Wonder: The Life and Art of Georgia O’Keeffe by Susan Goldman Rubin is a lovely new biography of the iconic 20th-century artist. 

This book is an incredible visual treat. Despite its relatively small size, the superb full-color reproductions of Georgia O’Keeffe’s paintings fairly glow. Interspersed with her artwork are photographs of the artist, some taken by her husband, Alfred Stieglitz. Even the pages of text add visual interest, as the pages and fonts vary in the colors of the rainbow throughout the book.

Rubin’s description of O’Keeffe’s life is quiet, simple and straightforward, which in a way captures the essence of the artist herself. She uses many quotes from O’Keeffe throughout, so we can clearly hear the artist’s voice.

The author also does a good job of putting O’Keeffe’s accomplishments in the perspective of her times. When Georgia was a young woman, females were allowed to teach art, but weren’t thought to be able to produce great art. Georgia O’Keeffe broke the barrier and then some. She became the first woman to have a solo show at the Museum of Modern Art, as well as many other accolades. Women artists who came after her owe a lot to Georgia O’Keefe’s quiet strength and determination.

Wideness & Wonder is sure to be inspiring to young artists, history buffs and especially those interested in women’s history. It is a perfect choice for Women’s History Month. It also could be used to accompany O’Keeffe-influenced art projects.

This book was nominated for a Cybils award in the MG/YA category. Susan Goldman Rubin also wrote another Cybils nominee, Music Was It: Young Leonard Bernstein.

Reading level: Ages 9-12
Hardcover: 124 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books (April 6, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0811869830
ISBN-13: 978-0811869836


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This week’s post is at Apples with Many Seeds.