Art and Max
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Art and Max

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  4,177 ratings  ·  384 reviews
Max and Arthur are friends who share an interest in painting. Arthur is an accomplished painter; Max is a beginner. Max's first attempt at using a paintbrush sends the two friends on a whirlwind trip through various artistic media, which turn out to have unexpected pitfalls.
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published April 7th 2011 by Andersen (first published October 4th 2010)
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Illustrators of children’s books are easier to deal with if you can lump them into little boxes. Multicultural family stories that tug at the heartstrings? That’s the Patricia Polacco box. Cute kids in period clothes frolicking with goats? Yup, that’s Tasha Tudor. So my problem with David Wiesner is that he throws my entire system off. Though his style is recognizable in each and every one of his books (Freefall, Sector 7, etc.) his storylines zigzag around the globe. One minute he has a book ab...more
Holly Hardwick
I absolutely loved reading Art & Max by David Wiesner because of the beautiful and colorful illustrations throughout the story. The plot is simple enough: two lizard friends, Arthur and Max, are standing in their desert habitat and trying to paint. Arthur is annoyed with Max because Max doesn't seem to be a "real" painter like he is. Max is just excited to be given the opportunity to paint with his friend "Art." When Max tries to paint Arthur, however, comedy ensues.
I feel that students wou...more
Todd Burleson
This review is one of my additional picture books for RLS 520

Art & Max written and illustrated by David Wiesner

This book is also a Monarch Award Nominee for 2013. I’m going to come right out and say it about this book: I don’t really like it. Now, let me explain why. The idea is quite simple and one that kids will love. Two friends Art(hur) and Max (both lizards) are standing in front of a canvas. Max insists that he can paint, just as well as Arthur, much to Arthur’s chagrin. The story goes...more
Beautiful work by David Wiesner, as always. I love his thoughtful color work (the shadows are especially interesting) and the playful expressiveness of his characters. When I saw that the book was pitting a traditional painter against an exuberant free spirit, I figured it would be just another anti-intellectual, populist diatribe against so-called "elitist art snobs." Art's frustration with Max is shown to be understandable, though, and not just a snooty conniption fit. Wouldn't you be angry if...more
Wiesner, David. (2010). Art & Max. Illustrated by the author. Boston: Houghton Mifflin/Clarion. 32 pp. ISBN 978-0-618-75663-6. (Hardcover) $17.99.

David Wiesner’s picture books are treasures! I teach first grade, but I have always dreamed of working with high school students using Flotsam. I would love to have high school students write two polar opposite texts about what is happening in this book. Art & Max is another book in which older students will find much to appreciate, especially...more
Art & Max is another wonderful picture book from David Wiesner. Max is a fumbling little lizard who sees his friend Arthur painting and wants to paint, too. When he asks Arthur what he should paint, Arthur suggests that Max paint him, as in paint his portrait. But, Max misinterprets and starts painting on Art, making Art into art! Arthur gets so angry at Max's antics that his outer shell explodes, revealing that his very skin has been dyed the colors of Max's paint! Max's attempts to "righ...more
Lisa Mckay
Art and Max are two best friend iguanas that have one thing in common: They love to paint! Now, the only difference is that Art is an excellent painter who takes life very seriously, and Max is a small less serious painter who always seems to get in Art's way.

As the story begins, Art had been working on his most recent piece when Max barged in his way asking what he should paint. Art seemly already bothered by his presence, quickly suggest "paint ME" without remembering how literal his friend w...more
Elizabeth Sousa
Art and Max tells the story of two “friends,” and I use that term loosely, who are both interested in painting. Art, who would much prefer that you call him Arthur, has established himself as a painter. Max admires Art’s work and wants to paint, too. The ensuing experience is filled with color, humor, and fun.

What first caught my eye when picking up the library edition of this text was the dust jacket illustration. I noticed, underneath the author’s name, that the title featured two different fo...more
Art and Max is a sweet and entertaining tale of two artists: one who is rather good and one that has alot of learning to do. As the story unfolds, Max comes upon Art completing a painting of another lizard. Max gets very excited at what he sees and decides that he really wants to paint his own picture. Art gets a little annoyed with Max, but lets him paint anyway. Max, however is unsure what his painting should be of, so he asks Art for advice. Art suggests that Max paint a picture of Art, excep...more
David Wiesner's illustrations are gorgeous. The book makes me feel out of this world beautiful. The image of all the colors splitting out of Art after Max "paints" him just stays imbedded in my mind. The story is about how Max (frog) also wants to create art like Art (or Arthur; dinosaur). The theme is not to underestimate anyone's ability, just as Max proved his own brilliance. David Wiesner's drawings were detail oriented and splashing with colors. Through his drawings, he demonstrates how Max...more
Meghan Collins
This week's theme in my preschool class is art, so I've decided to read 2 art books for the last book review in the fiction picture book category.

This book helps children discover art in a different way other than drawing and coloring. Max is a small lizard in a painting class and comes to a disagreement with his teacher, Arthur, when he paints him instead of painting a picture of Art. Art gets mad, shakes off all of his scales, and disappears and Max is left to recreate him. This book shows st...more
Art, a horned lizard with an artist’s temperament, is doing a bit of portraiture in his desert environment when along bounces happy-go-lucky Max. Max wants to paint just like Art, and the grumpy elder agrees grudgingly, informing the little guy, “Just don’t get in the way.” When Max asks what he should paint, Art suggests himself. Unfortunately for him, Max takes this advice a little too literally and Max finds himself covered in oils, turned into pastels, and eventually nothing more than a mere...more
Sarah Foote
Art & Max: The illustrations and text symbolically remind me of the two characters in the book. The illustrations tell a story and are unique, however the text elaborates and provides more of the story. Like the characters Art is a great painter, then Max comes along, and brings a different side of painting to Art’s attention, giving Art more artistic range just as the text gives more to the illustrations. The energy Max has is portrayed in the illustrations he is running, on the go. The ill...more
Sandra Ayala
Another book I choose to read was Max and Arthur by David Wiesner. This picture book is about two lizards who are friends and who both enjoy painting however when Max tries to paint for the first time he causes Arthur to eventually disappear. The book takes you on the crazy adventure full of color and artistic media to get Arthur back to reality. I love this book because of the beautiful and colorful illustrations. It is a great comical book for children to skim through. The book has little to n...more
Nani Yanagi
Art & Max is about two lizards, Arthur and Max, and their passion for creating art. Arthur is a very talented painter, and Max wanted to also show Arthur that he could paint too. Arthur said he can paint him, not knowing that Max would literally paint him with a bunch of colors. They tried everything they could to get the paint off, but all of a sudden Arthur didn’t feel too well. Max kept giving him water to drink which made all the colors washed away leaving only an outline of Arthur's bod...more
Kevin Taylor
This book is absolutely fantastic! The colours and illustrations are lively and exciting. David Wiesner never ceases to impress.
Art & Max is the story of two lizard friends, Arthur, who is an experienced painter and artist and Max who is just learning to become an artist. The story explores Max’s first experience painting and experimenting with different colors as takes the reader on a color-filled adventure. The story really goes through the artistic media in which the book is illustrated i...more
Ok first let me say this book is laugh out loud funny. The pictures are wonderful. Each page has a simple sentence or two. I loved this book. What happens to Art is so unpredictable. Then how Max tries to return him to normal is incredible. I loved it. I think I said that already.
This book is about a young lizard learning how to paint. I would not use this book in my classroom, the story plot was dull, redundant and pointless. I don’t feel my students can gain anything from this book other then practicing reading. I do not recommend this book.
A book my 5 yr old as well as my twin 3 yr olds loved. A solid reading level 1 book, this cute story keeps all ages engaged with the bright colorful pictures and cute story. Beautiful illustrations! A great addition to any children's library.
Gorgeous illustrations (of course) but the text and story were clunky and almost read like captions to his illustrations. I get why so many of his books are wordless!
Luke Sanchez
I cannot stress enough how good of an illustrator David Weisner is. There is a reason why he is a Caldecott Award winner. His illustrations come alive while you read and you could be able to figure out the story without even reading the words. Wiesner takes full advantage of the space in this book. There are very little empty white spots on the pages and he uses a landscape orientation. The colors are vibrant and the illustrations are humorous. Art and Max are both painters though Art is more ex...more
Kim Zarins
I don't care how old you are--you should read anything and everything by Wiesner. While FLOTSAM and TUESDAY are my personal favorites, I like the experimenting with different kinds of art in ART & MAX. The way Max keeps trying to correct his original act of "painting" Arthur/Art escalates as Art gets rendered in different media. My favorite is when Art literally gets washed out from his watercolor phase and becomes a line drawing that unravels in Max's hand. Max is a comic kid who learns abo...more
Michelle McBeth
Beautiful artwork as always from Wiesner, but the story is extremely confusing, I had to read and reread the first couple of pages to figure out who was saying what. The style of the story telling leaves much to be desired. Not so sure I like the story either. The little lizard completely messes up the big lizard by painting him, but in the end the big lizard is okay with it. No consequences for the little guy. The concepts here are pretty mature too. I don't know that young children would get i...more
The book Art and Max by David Wiesner starts out with tan end pages. I believe that the illustrator chose tan as the end pages because it symbolizes the desert sand. This book is also set up with a horizontal landscape. Throughout the book there is a transition between full bleeds, double full bleeds, and borders. The illustrator uses all of the different types of borders so that he can get his story across perfectly through the pictures as well as the text.
I would highly recommend this book to...more
Cory Schulz
This book is about a novice artist is trying to impress an expert artist and everything seems to go wrong. This book was very interesting because different art styles were used throughout the book. The illustrations were very realistic. I loved this book, but it was not my favorite. This would be a great book for a art class. You can discuss the different art style and also allows for a possible assignment. Also this book can be used as a teaching point. People do screw up every once in a while...more
Melody Wolen
Reading Level: K-3
Art and Max is the creative story of two lizards, Art is a talented artist who tries to teach Max. Their hilarious adventures make for an extremely humorous children’s book. David Wiesner’s vivid artistry highlights the imagination in this fun to read book. A great idea in the classroom would be to have students re-draw Art like Max has to in the book, have them explain changes they would make. This activity would work best with 2nd to 4th grade students and could be both a wri...more
Alyssa Gergins
This is a fun adventure between two friends Art and Max. Art is a very talented artist and Max is learning to be just as good as him. As you go through the process of creative thinking, you see the progression of Max and how he develops into an artist. These were some of the best illustrations I have ever seen. They were creative and bright. Even though the story was hectic at times and a lot going on at once, the illustrations keep you intrigued. I really enjoyed it and would recommend it to K...more
I would definitely give one and a half stars to this book.

As always, the artistic skills of author/illustrator David Wiesner shine in extraordinary fashion. While I don't have a lot of technical knowledge about painting or the proper processes by which artistic form is created, it's still pretty clear to me that David Wiesner routinely tries to do things that have never been attempted in the history of modern picture books. It's a credit to his ability as an artist that the pictures he makes c...more
Art is an artistic Lizard. Max is his overly enthusiastic friend (also a lizard). When Max sees Art painting a portrait of some of their friends, he wants to get involved, too. So they set up an easel and a canvas for him, but then Max can’t think of what to paint. Art suggests, “Paint me!” So Max does. Literally. In all the colors of the rainbow. With really bizarre consequences. Art gets so mad that he busts out of his scaly hide, but his rainbow coloring remains until Max offers him some wate...more
Richie Partington
2 July 2010 ART & MAX by David Wiesner, Clarion, October 2010, 40p., ISBN: 978-0-618-75663-6

"When that fat old sun in the sky is falling,
Summer evening birds are calling
Children's laughter in my ears
The last sunlight disappears
And if you see, don't make a sound
Pick your feet up off the ground
And if you hear as the warm night falls
The silver sound from a time so strange
Sing to me
Sing to me"
-- David Gilmour, 1970

I've always found that any interactive educational process, when it is working,...more
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During David Wiesner's formative years, the last images he saw before closing his eyes at night were the books, rockets, elephant heads, clocks, and magnifying glasses that decorated the wallpaper of his room. Perhaps it was this decor which awakened his creativity and gave it the dreamlike, imaginative quality so often found in his work.

As a child growing up in suburban New Jersey, Wiesner re-cre...more
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