Pop art is loud, colorful, and visually exciting—just like this book. Painter and sculptor Joyce Raimondo provides an introduction to this style of art through the works of its major creators: Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Claes Oldenburg, and George Segal. These artists of the 1950s and 1960s were inspired by popular culture—advertising, newspapers, recycled consumer products—and created eye-catching works, often on a large scale. For example, “Jasper Johns changed a map of the United States of America into a wild wonderful work of art.” After introducing each artist, Raimondo provides step-by-step directions for readers to create a piece of artwork in the style of the featured artist. She also gives less-detailed suggestions for further activities related to the main project, such as a Rauschenberg-inspired sculpture made of “old plastic toys, stuffed animals, broken jewelry, or anything else.”
Director of the Imagine That! Art Education program, Raimondo created the multi-volume series “Art Explorers,” which includes Make It Pop! Other titles in the series are Imagine That!: Activities and Adventures in Surrealism, Picture This!: Activities and Adventures in Impressionism, and Express Yourself!: Activities and Adventures in Expressionism. For eight years Raimondo directed the family programs at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. Her work there included creating the Art Safari series of children’s books, kits, and online program.
In this well-designed book, many color photographs accompany the clear project instructions and lists of supplies needed. While the bold typeface in the directions is helpful, it is distracting in other parts of the book. The included photographs of artwork created by children in Raimondo’s workshops will inspire readers and demonstrate that the projects in Make It Pop! are age appropriate. If this title is any indication of the merits of the “Art Explorers” books, art teachers, elementary teachers, and librarians will want to add the entire series to their collections.