Picture books, art, and the appreciation of things

I have a passion project. Thanks to Facebook, and my inability to hold onto a USB stick for more than thirty second without losing it, I have started to gather an album of picture book images. The curation method for these is simple, eccentric. I have to like it. I have to be able to talk about it.

(How curious it is that books are one thing when read privately, selfishly, but quite another when we talk about them.)

I did a talk the other day to some local sixth formers about life as a researcher, doing this. Books. Literacy. Trying to understand one of the most global, primal experiences.  Reading. Communication. Everything builds from books, I said, everything.

12109240_10156176844855371_1421000328376951833_n.jpg

More Katie Morag Island Stories : Mairi Hedderwick

I described research:

Asking why. Asking, always, asking why things are the way they are and what can we do to affect, address, challenge, question that.

12523984_10156710864075371_3334033171539341968_n.jpg

Cloudland by John Burningham

And I showed them Art.
Capital A, capital ART.

1794818_10156180160780371_5620268026656119163_n.jpg

Madeline in London : Ludwig Bemmelmans

Picture books are something which we treat, sometimes, too lightly.

12919617_10156710912640371_1665115489772571730_n.jpg

Five Senses : Herve Tullet

We’re driven by our sense of adulthood. Age based imperialism. A sense that we know better, that we shouldn’t be reading these things.

15894437_10158006224155371_2025039548128438426_n.jpg

A Brush with the Past: 1900 – 1950 The Years that changed our lives : Shirley Hughes

So sometimes, I asked them to just look at things.

12249619_10156233386015371_1049406099088073570_n.jpg

Refuge – Anne Booth & Sam Usher

Because looking – seeing – is where it all begins.

All of it.

12289483_10156233405020371_5312879735978971903_n.jpg

A Taste of Chlorine – Bastine Vivés

Us.

Advertisements

One thought on “Picture books, art, and the appreciation of things

  1. I agree absolutely with all that you’ve said here, and love your choice of pictures — personal, to be sure, but generously shared.

    I’m not an academic researcher but, yes, any research should above all be asking ‘why’, and not just the obvious ‘who, what, when and where’ that I see regarded so often as sufficient.

    Why, and probably her sister How, these instincts seem to combine the philosopher and the scientist in us and distinguish us as beings doing more than just existing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s