This past weekend we went to the Ezra Jack Keats show at the Jewish Museum in Manhattan. I have always been a fan of Keats’ collage illustrations and his unprecedented choice in the 1960′s, an era of racial segregation and oppression, to portray children of color in his stories. I got a bit emotional seeing his original work. My kids loved spotting panels on the wall from some of their favorite books. Before I was scolded by the security guard I took this snap of a panel from Keats’ book, “Letter To Amy,” which will be a Christmas gift for my daughter. Shh. Don’t tell.
There is also some original Keats related correspondence such as a letter from 1963 to a publicity person for Viking Press, the publisher of “The Snowy Day.”
Dear Miss Crittendon,
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats is a perfectly charming little book. I wish I had some grandchildren to give it to. Yes I do!
The show is up until January 29, 2012 and worth the trip.