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Jelly, Garbage + Toys: Making Pictures with Vik Muniz

by Vik Muniz, Joan Sommers, Amanda Freymann, Ascha Drake

Grade level: 3–7
Hardcover: 64 pages
Abrams Books for Young Readers, October 3, 2017

Vik Muniz (b. 1961, São Paulo, Brazil) employs a playful approach to making art that captivates children and adults alike. Muniz works with everyday materials—peanut butter and jelly, chocolate syrup, even garbage—to make images that often reference masterpieces or popular icons.

Drawn from interviews with children, Jelly, Garbage + Toys is an interactive first-person narrative that presents Muniz’s personal story and his art, focusing on some of his many processes and mediums. The book emphasizes the importance of play in the creation of art, while challenging children to think about how images are made and what they mean. The design—with graphic novel-inspired speech bubbles, liftable flaps, and a Turkish Map Fold (all four sides open)—helps communicate Muniz’s exuberant message.

Images created with sugar, tomato sauce, diamonds, magazine clippings, chocolate syrup, dust, and junk can be seen on the website of the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, which presented a retrospective of the artist’s work in 2016.

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