Coverart for item
The Resource Radiant child : the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, by Javaka Steptoe

Radiant child : the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, by Javaka Steptoe

Label
Radiant child : the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat
Title
Radiant child
Title remainder
the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat
Statement of responsibility
by Javaka Steptoe
Creator
Author
Illustrator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Jean-Michel Basquiat and his unique, collage-style paintings rocked to fame in the 1980s as a cultural phenomenon unlike anything the art work had ever seen. But before that, he was a little boy who saw art everywhere: in poetry books and museums, in games and in the words that we speak, and in the pulsing energy of New York City. Now, award-winning illustrator Javaka Steptoe's vivid text and bold artwork echoing Basquiat's own introduce young readers to the powerful message and art doesn't always have to be neat or clean--and definitely not inside the lines--to be beautiful
Writing style
Illustration
Award
  • Caldecott Medal, 2017.
  • Coretta Scott King Award, Illustrator Category, 2017.
  • School Library Journal Best Books, 2016
  • ALA Notable Children's Book, 2017
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ Gr 1–5—One extraordinary artist illuminates another in this textured, heartfelt picture book biography of the 1980s cultural phenom. Employing signature features of Jean-Michel Basquiat's work—vibrant colors, found objects, repeated motifs—Steptoe allows his own emotionally rich style to shine through the artistic and biographical references dotting the illustrations. Pieces of discarded wood from Basquiat's stomping grounds fit together to form the painted surfaces for Steptoe's scenes of the Afro Puerto Rican artist, each unfolding within a colored frame. Occasional collage elements of newsprint, photographs, and art materials add dimension and immediacy, highlighting both artists' immersion in their work and surroundings. Adhering to a straightforward chronology, Steptoe addresses events in Basquiat's life primarily as they affected his artistic growth from young boyhood in Brooklyn through the triumphant years as a critical and popular success in Manhattan. With minimal detail, the author sensitively touches upon his subject's childhood car crash and his mother's mental illness, though the story avoids his drug use and stops before his early death. Crucial back matter provides context for readers in every respect. Additional biographical information fleshes out the lyrical text of the main narrative, and an introduction to symbolism in Basquiat's work helps readers appreciate the layers at play in Steptoe's illustrations. An author's note articulates feelings that radiate from every page of the book: Steptoe's admiration for and attachment to Basquiat and his personal investment in depicting a complicated, loving relationship between a child and a mentally ill parent. VERDICT Pairing simple text with expressive, encompassing illustrations, this excellent title offers a new generation a fittingly powerful introduction to an artistic luminary.—Robbin E. Friedman, Chappaqua Library, NY --Robbin E. Friedman (Reviewed 08/01/2016) (School Library Journal, vol 62, issue 8, p127)
  • /* Starred Review */ In this visually arresting and vibrantly narrated biography, Steptoe (In Daddy’s Arms I Am Tall) charts the childhood of incandescent, ill-fated artist Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960–1988). Although the book includes no work by Basquiat himself, Steptoe emulates 1980s street art by layering paint, paper scraps, paint tubes, and photos on found-wood panels. The artist, Steptoe writes, learned to see art in the “messy patchwork of the city,” the “street games of little children,” and the “terrible blues” of growing up. Basquiat’s early influences include his Puerto Rican mother, Matilde, who encourages him with museum visits and with the textbook Gray’s Anatomy. Poetry and his Haitian father’s jazz records fuel his imagination, too: “His drawings are not neat or clean, nor does he color inside the lines.” Basquiat’s radiance was suffused with trauma, and Steptoe alludes to Matilde’s mental illness and Basquiat’s teenage strife (“His mother’s mind is not well, and the family breaks”). Passing references to Warhol, Haring, graffiti, and Basquiat’s heroin overdose appear in the afterword: “Basquiat lived an exhilarating life, but... he struggled with a drug addiction until his death.” Overall, Steptoe focuses on Basquiat’s meteoric rise, and readers see the artist smiling as he walks on the gritty Lower East Side. Collaged photographs picture a crowded gallery, and Steptoe concludes in the present tense: “He is now a famous artist!” Steptoe downplays tragic elements, instead celebrating Basquiat’s irreverence and brilliance. Ages 4–8. (Oct.) --Staff (Reviewed 08/08/2016) (Publishers Weekly, vol 263, issue 32, p)
  • /* Starred Review */ Steptoe chronicles the formative years and evolving style of Jean-Michel Basquiat, a Brooklyn-born graffiti artist with a rising career in the 1980s fine arts world; coverage ceases before his untimely drug-related death at age 27.Steptoe’s canvas is wood salvaged from the Brooklyn Museum and locales that Basquiat frequented. Spaces between the patched fragments contribute to the impression of a disjointed childhood. Steptoe shows that Basquiat was smart and driven early on, influenced by his Haitian father’s jazz records and his Puerto Rican mother’s style, encouragement, breakdown, and institutionalization when he was only 7. Prior to that, she drew with him, took him to see Picasso’s Guernica, and gave him Grey’s Anatomy following a serious car accident. Images of body parts imprint his increasingly complex political paintings, along with other recurring motifs explained in outstanding backmatter. Several sentences per spread speak with understated lyricism and poignancy, an occasional internal rhyme underscoring a point: “Jean-Michel is confused and filled with a terrible blues / when Matilde can no longer live at home.” Acknowledging his multifaceted sense of connection, Steptoe interprets Basquiat’s style instead of inserting particular works. Vibrant colors and personal symbols channel the “sloppy, ugly, and sometimes weird, but somehow still BEAUTIFUL” paintings, incorporating meticulously attributed collage elements and capturing the artist’s energy and mystery. Stellar bookmaking—a riveting portrait of a young artist. (author’s note, bibliography, biography) (Picture book/biography. 6-12)(Kirkus Reviews, January 1, 1900)
Biography type
contains biographical information
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10532899
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1971-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Steptoe, Javaka
Dewey number
  • 740.92
  • B
Illustrations
illustrations
Index
no index present
Intended audience
1050L
Intended audience source
Lexile
Interest level
LG
LC call number
N6537.B233
LC item number
S84 2014
Literary form
non fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 1
  • 5
Nature of contents
bibliography
Reading level
4.7
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Study program name
Accelerated Reader AR
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Basquiat, Jean-Michel
  • Basquiat, Jean-Michel
  • Basquiat, Jean-Michel
  • Artists
  • Artists
  • Artists
  • JUVENILE NONFICTION / Art / History
  • JUVENILE NONFICTION / Art / Painting
  • JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Art
  • JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Cultural Heritage
  • JUVENILE NONFICTION / Family / Parents
  • JUVENILE NONFICTION / Social Topics / Emotions & Feelings
  • United States
Target audience
juvenile
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat
Label
Radiant child : the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, by Javaka Steptoe
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (t.page verso)
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
  • text
  • still image
Content type code
  • txt
  • sti
Content type MARC source
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
Control code
1647344
Dimensions
28 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
1 volume (unpaged)
Isbn
9780316213882
Lccn
2013018520
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
color illustrations
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780316213882
  • (OCoLC)849509653
Label
Radiant child : the story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, by Javaka Steptoe
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (t.page verso)
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
  • text
  • still image
Content type code
  • txt
  • sti
Content type MARC source
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
Control code
1647344
Dimensions
28 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
1 volume (unpaged)
Isbn
9780316213882
Lccn
2013018520
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
color illustrations
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780316213882
  • (OCoLC)849509653

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