July 26, 2008


Does the name Mike Venezia mean anything to you? If you are an art educator..IT SHOULD! He is the mastermind behind GETTING TO KNOW THE WORLD'S GREATEST ARTISTS. This set of books(now at 48 titles) is one of the best(if not THE best) series of art & artists for elementary age students. After visiting his website, I saw that he also has GETTING TO KNOW THE WORLD'S GREATEST COMPOSERS, GETTING TO KNOW THE U.S. PRESIDENTS, and GETTING TO KNOW THE WORLD'S GREATEST INVENTORS & SCIENTISTS. I can only image that they are just as amazing as the ARTISTS series. AnYwAYs?!?!?! Let me not get distracted...this is an art blog!! ha ha

GETTING TO KNOW THE WORLD'S GREATEST ARTISTS provide amazing background information, facts about the artists, and insight into their work in a kid friendly cartoon format. Worked into the cartoons are actual art images as well. I've been using this series for the past 8 yrs in my classroom, and LOVE THEM(and so do my students!!!). As an added bonus, THEY HAVE MADE VIDEOS/DVD'S!!!!!! Unfortunately the entire series has not yet been placed in this format. Presently they have Monet, Van Gogh(my fav), Rembrandt, Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Warhol, and Cassatt. BUY THEM NOW!!!!!! You won't regret it. I use them with 1st grade on up. Honestly, I think middle & high school teachers could use them & the kids would enjoy them!

I was able to buy the series & dvd's through grants I've written. However, you may want to see if your school librarian may consider purchasing them for your school(my librarian is always asking me if there are art books that she should buy with her funding).


***********I will say that there are some art images contained within the books that could cause issue at the elementary age. You, as the professional, will need to handle it as you see fit(and as your administration may ask of you). I'm speaking of nudies. Depending on your students & how you handle this within your room, it may just be addressing the fact that those images are found within the books, you may make little outfits for them and tape/glue those in(this is what one of my friends did), or you can pull those books that contain the questionable images only from the series, and use those as personal resources. I hate that this would even be an issue, but as you know....IT IS!*************************

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