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An Eye for Color: The Story of Josef Albers
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An Eye for Color: The Story of Josef Albers

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4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  115 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
As a child, Josef Albers loved to watch his handyman father paint houses.When Josef grew up and became an artist, he reduced each image to its simplest shapes, breaking it down into blocks of color.

He made an incredible discovery: he could alter the entire mood of a painting just by changing the way he combined the colors! Josef spent his entire life studying color, and wh
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Hardcover, 40 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Henry Holt and Co.
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(showing 1-30)
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Miriam
Nov 26, 2015 Miriam rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture, art
Josef Albers (1888 – 1976) was a German, and later American* artist whose work was important to modern art theory and education. He is best know for the hundreds of paintings and prints that make up the series "Homage to the Square."



I'm not sure how many kids would be interested in abstract art exploring color theory, but this was a nicely done short bio. I liked that some hands on projects were included at the end; this book might be useful for non-specialists who needed to include at art unit.
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Lisa Vegan
Jul 27, 2011 Lisa Vegan rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: readers who like art books & biographies
Recommended to Lisa by: Abigail A.
Great cover illustration! It really drew me in, especially given the title of the book. And I think it’s a brilliant book. I love the art education, the information about modern and abstract art, the projects at the end of the book and within the book that readers can do, the biographical information about Josef Albers, and the particularly touching personal connection this author has to the artist. Very special!

I enjoy art, and modern and abstract art, but I’ve never been the biggest fan of Alb
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Tasha
Aug 17, 2009 Tasha rated it really liked it
Josef Albers was born in Germany where he saw art everywhere including in the doors his father painted. As he grew up, he worked with collage and different medium in his art. When he traveled to Mexico, he found inspiration everywhere. He began painting rectangles and noticing how colors changed depending on what is around them. He set out to study color itself and eventually wrote a book, Interaction of Color. Albers’ colorful squares play a major role in modern art, and readers of this book ...more
Barbara
Mar 15, 2010 Barbara rated it really liked it
Though I recognized the name Josef Albers and even knew he was an artist, that was the beginning and end of my knowledge. I learned a good bit more as I read this simple picture book biography which tells a straightforward story of Albers' life with an emphasis on the work he did to understand color. What makes the book memorable, however, are the illustrations where color and shape are used in imaginative ways that are reminiscent of Albers work. I love the double page spread early in the book ...more
Barb
Mar 13, 2014 Barb rated it it was amazing
Clever, fun and interesting with great illustrations. I loved the author's note and her connection to Josef Albers, the more about Josef Albers pages fill in the details of his life and there's a glossary of terms and a color wheel at the end of the book. This is a well thought out book. We loved it!
Michelle
So many interesting ideas in this picture book biography. For 27 years Josef Albers painted squares of various colors to learn more about color.
Allison Weiler
Aug 10, 2016 Allison Weiler rated it liked it
Title: An Eye for Color
Author: Natasha Wing
Illustrator: Julia Breckenreid
Genre: Biography (young)
Theme(s): Creativity, Imagination, Painting, Sculpting
Opening line/sentence: Josef Albers saw art in the simplest things. Growing up in a coal-mining city in Germany, he watched his father paint doors as if they were artists’ canvases.
Brief Book Summary: Josef Albers grew up watching his father paint. From here he discovered he had an ‘eye for colors’ and all they have to offer. This book will take
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Rebecca
Oct 11, 2016 Rebecca rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Maggie
The artist in me loved this excellent picture book biography of Josef Albers, who became famous doing abstract color studies. This would be great for a school-age program on color or optical illusion, and the illustration style itself could be used to introduce abstract art.
Eventually, Josef presented his studies in the simplest way possible: squares of color.

Includes an Author's Note (Albers was the author's neighbor!), a "more about the artist" section, glossary, selected bibliography, and a
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Nielson
Jan 18, 2010 Nielson rated it it was amazing
Learn all about the life and art of Josef Alber in this picture book biography. This would be a wonderful book to use to introduce students to colors, different art forms, and artists. The actual story text isn't overly-long, but there are more details provided in the back of the book if you wanted to learn more about Josef Alber. Also included are different art activities you could do on your own. The art in the book is vibrant and colorful and portrays what I think Alber wanted to express ...more
Theresa C
Sep 29, 2010 Theresa C rated it it was amazing
ISBN-978-0-805008072-8
c2009
Art teachers will love using this book to introduce this artist and his theory of color. Hands on projects, a color wheel, lots of valuable biographical information. This is a must have book for any library or art room! The many examples of colored squares in the book are extremely helpful in showing how colors interact with each other. And who would not be intrigued by the way the illustrator has used the word color on the face of Josef Albers on the cover of the book
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Erika
Apr 07, 2015 Erika rated it it was amazing
Shelves: art, kid-stuff
When I saw this book online, my only hope was that it was half as good as it looked. And I think it is! I read it right away to my 6 year old, which sparked an interesting conversation about both art and color! A really nice little book with a very short history of Albers. Best of all, the books' author grew up next-door to Albers and new him as a child. To her, he was just a neighbor who liked to paint, and it wasn't until much later that she realized what an impact Albers had on the world of ...more
Ramarie
Jun 18, 2010 Ramarie rated it really liked it
if you've ever thought about how colors "interact" with each other and how they affect each other, then you will enjoy reading about Josef Albers in this picture book biography. Albers's study of color consumed him. The author lived next door to the artist as a girl. Rounded out by an author's note, more biographical info about Albers, a glosssary, and activities to experiment with colors. Nice!
Emily
Nov 16, 2013 Emily rated it really liked it
Imagine an artist who was so intrigued by and in love with color that he decided to paint almost nothing but squares for the rest of his life! "In 1933, Josef was invited to teach in America. His goal was 'to open eyes'..." "One color stepped away...another popped forward..." Unsurprisingly but happily vivid illustrations introduce the concept of how colors impact (or speak to) each other.
Amanda Kerfeld
This is a book about an artist that discovers how color changes his artwork. This book would be good for upper elementary and it would be good to teach students about art education. I think students who are interested in art would really enjoy this book. It teaches students that even by changing one thing in art it can change the whole picture.
jacky
Aug 03, 2010 jacky rated it really liked it
I let Natalie wonder around the library and she stopped at this book. I read her a little bit of it out loud and a little bit more to myself. I really thought it was a cool non-fiction book. I hadn't heard of the artist Josef Albers, but I thought reading about his experimentation with color was fun. I liked how the illustrations help to make the points of the text.
Pam
Jul 28, 2014 Pam rated it it was amazing
This is a great book that covers all bases and is as great for adults as it is children. The author even includes several postscripts with more detailed information on Josef Albers, a glossary of terms, selected bibliography and suggested activities. Thanks to the author Natasha Wing, illustrator Julia Breckenreid and publisher Henry Holt for an excellent art book!
Terri
Mar 18, 2011 Terri rated it really liked it
A great picture book about the life and work of artist Josef Albers. This would be an awesome choice for those of any age interested in Art and a great tool for Art teachers. Author Natasha Wing provides great back matter: a glossary an author's note (Albers lived in her neighborhood as she was growing up}, more about the artist, and suggested activities.
Denise
Nov 07, 2009 Denise rated it really liked it
Shelves: jb
This is a very cool book, the author has some insight on this subject since he was a neighbor of hers when she was a young girl. Josef Albers experimented with color and did so by painting a lot of squares.
Kristen
Aug 14, 2012 Kristen rated it really liked it
Great art biography. Love the additional material at the end, with a color wheel, author's note, and a little color theory for younger readers. Only one thing bothered me - in one page he talks about pairing black with orange, but the picture is clearly red instead.
Melanie
A picture book biography of German artist Josef Albers. The author and illustrator do a beautiful job of walking children through the journey of his life and how he discovered colors and what they could do to/with each other.
Jesika La Bryer
Nov 23, 2011 Jesika La Bryer rated it really liked it
Shelves: biographies
Copyright 2009
I had never heard of Josef Albers before reading this book. The pictures are very abstract with vivid colors. This is a great biography about art history and Josef. The information is given in a great way that makes you want to keep reading.
Edie
Jul 23, 2009 Edie rated it really liked it
A great book to introduce the work of Josef Albers and his contribution to what we know about color. There are lots of examples of Albers' work as well as clear explanations and end pages that add more details about his life as well as a glossary. A great teaching tool.
Lisa
Dec 19, 2009 Lisa rated it liked it
Recommended to Lisa by: Cap Ch 10-14
Accessible story of Josef Albers' fascination with color and life-long passion to experimenting with it in his art. The illustrations help illustrate the changing nature of colors and how Albers used them.
The Styling Librarian
An Eye for Color – The Story of Josef Albers by Natasha Wing – it never ceases to amaze me the creativity of the human mind. I loved reading the biography about Josef Albers who discovered the power of color, squares, and how color can share emotions, etc. Really enjoyed reading this book.
Samantha
Chickadee Nominee 2010-2011

At first I was skeptical because I've seen Albers' paintings and mostly just thought that they were something that even I could replicate. I'm not sure I feel much differently, but I have an appreciation for the thought he put behind his work.
Taylor Washington
Nov 21, 2015 Taylor Washington rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Summary: Tells the story of Josef Albers and how he came to admire color in all its shades and forms.

Activity: Students will paint there our collection of shapes using different colors. Also will write a report on Josef Albers.
Sonic
Dec 02, 2013 Sonic rated it it was amazing
"Learning Never Ends"
~Josef Albers (?)

Super wonderful "children's" book about one of the leading Color Theorists, and pioneering color experimentalists.
Did you know Mr Albers lived in Orange (Ct.)?

Heh heh heh
Kathleen
Feb 09, 2010 Kathleen rated it really liked it
Colorful, striking illustrations are perfect for this biography of artist and color expert Josef Albers. The book could stand on its merits as a biography for young readers, but could also be used as an inspiration for various art projects as well.
Kristine
Aug 22, 2015 Kristine rated it liked it
Shelves: juvenile-books
Sometimes books written for kids, simple and colorful like this one, explain it best. Wonder how many squares I can create today...
Caren
Oct 24, 2010 Caren rated it really liked it
Good book. Well written. A good insight to so many kids who don't have any idea he is.
Good Rea-Aloud.
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Why am I a writer? When I was a young girl, I wanted to be a teacher. I’d line up my stuffed animals in front of a board and teach them the alphabet and how to count. In high school I wanted to be a tennis player. I was on the tennis team, and played at our neighborhood tennis club. Then in college I thought digging dinosaur bones would be a cool job. It wasn’t until I was working at my own public ...more
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“It's the only dish I serve my craziness for color in.” 2 likes
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