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Imagine!

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A wordless picture book about a visit to the museum and the power of art and imagination. After passing a city museum many times, a boy finally decides to go in. He passes wall after wall of artwork until he sees a painting that makes him stop and ponder. Before long the painting comes to life and an afternoon of adventure and discovery changes how he sees the world ever af A wordless picture book about a visit to the museum and the power of art and imagination. After passing a city museum many times, a boy finally decides to go in. He passes wall after wall of artwork until he sees a painting that makes him stop and ponder. Before long the painting comes to life and an afternoon of adventure and discovery changes how he sees the world ever after.


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A wordless picture book about a visit to the museum and the power of art and imagination. After passing a city museum many times, a boy finally decides to go in. He passes wall after wall of artwork until he sees a painting that makes him stop and ponder. Before long the painting comes to life and an afternoon of adventure and discovery changes how he sees the world ever af A wordless picture book about a visit to the museum and the power of art and imagination. After passing a city museum many times, a boy finally decides to go in. He passes wall after wall of artwork until he sees a painting that makes him stop and ponder. Before long the painting comes to life and an afternoon of adventure and discovery changes how he sees the world ever after.

30 review for Imagine!

  1. 5 out of 5

    Anbolyn

    This was really creative and so visually stunning. It made me smile all the way through. I love how it illustrates the power of art and the worth in visiting art museums.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance

    A boy ventures into New York City's Museum of Modern Art, and animals and people from many paintings join the boy as he travels around the city. It's a wordless story with beautiful art, and it's full of exuberance and creativity and magic.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey

    I loved that this book wordlessly showed the power of art and art museums. I loved that a boy, by himself, went to the museum and using his imagination connected to the artwork on the walls.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Beverly

    This reminded me a lot of The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau by Jon Agee. This is a wordless book in which the figures in 3 paintings come to life.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)

    Beautiful wordless book

  6. 5 out of 5

    Tonja Drecker

    This is a beautiful tribute to art and inspires young readers to experience, and then incorporate it into their lives. A boy heads off to the art museum in New York with a box of chalk in his back pocket. At the museum, he gazes at the different pieces of art when one comes alive and dances with him. Soon, the figures from other paintings come to life, and with a colorful group, he heads to the city. When the adventure finally ends and they return to their paintings, the boy uses these experience This is a beautiful tribute to art and inspires young readers to experience, and then incorporate it into their lives. A boy heads off to the art museum in New York with a box of chalk in his back pocket. At the museum, he gazes at the different pieces of art when one comes alive and dances with him. Soon, the figures from other paintings come to life, and with a colorful group, he heads to the city. When the adventure finally ends and they return to their paintings, the boy uses these experiences to let inspiration flow as he heads back into his daily life. The illustrations are gorgeous and carry the entire book without the need for text or words. The illustrator presents New York as a rather brown, fairly monotone world before the boy steps into the museum and the colorful paintings bring brightness and life. The paintings are true to life existing ones, which in itself, presents a possibility for teachers/ parents to open up the world of art to young readers. When the boy heads out into New York with his new found, cheerful friends, they visit various sites and experience different activities, the city has to offer. Those who know New York will feel at home, while others learn a little more about the city. When the boy heads back out of the museum, his adventures complete, the dreary, brownish buildings are back, but the boy now uses his chalk to brighten them up, bringing color into the world with him. The various messages in this book and aspects offer a bounty of discussion material for children. Children are opened up to the world of art, taught how to digest and incorporate it into their lives and even learn other things along the way. I'll admit, the graffiti on the building made me flinch, and while the chalk aspect definitely helps, part of me isn't sure this was the best way to approach things. The other part, the artist, finds it wonderful and wishes all dreary walls were brightened. Hence, the 4.5 stars which I'm rounding up to 5 stars. Summed up, this is a wonderful book which would especially work well in classroom, homeschooling or other group situations. It's an effective and exciting way to introduce kids to the beauty of art and will leave them seeking inspiration of their own. I received a complimentary copy and found the book so original and well done that I wanted to leave my honest thoughts.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Bange

    A great personification of how art feeds the soul, this example is visual art... Based loosely on his own experience, Colon wordlessly delivers a magical fantasy about a boy who follows a pigeon on his skateboard from his house to the art museum, where he stops to see what is inside. He experiences the magic of art for the first time, spending the afternooon on adventures with the subjects of three famous paintings: The Sleeping Gypsy (Rousseau), The Three Musicians (Picasso), and Icarus (Matisse A great personification of how art feeds the soul, this example is visual art... Based loosely on his own experience, Colon wordlessly delivers a magical fantasy about a boy who follows a pigeon on his skateboard from his house to the art museum, where he stops to see what is inside. He experiences the magic of art for the first time, spending the afternooon on adventures with the subjects of three famous paintings: The Sleeping Gypsy (Rousseau), The Three Musicians (Picasso), and Icarus (Matisse), until it is time to go home. On the way home, he is inspired to share some of the magic he found in his own backyard/neighborhood. What a stunning book! Using only watercolors, Prismacolor pencils, and lithograph pencils on Arches paper, Colon shows this young man's wonder and transformation in his face, in his arms and legs, in his posture. The pieces of art jump out and back into their framed confines and the boy joins them in their own little world, dancing, singing, and playing joyously and free of life's burdens. The colors are stunning. The scenery is authentic. Simply magical visually! I appreciate the author note in the back. It really serves as a great artist's statement and encourages visiting art museums. Raul Colon, we are kindred spirits because I had a similar epiphany while viewing artwork in a museum for the very first time as an adult in Boston's Museum of Fine Art. I grew up with and bought books about art and enjoyed looking at art, however, it was when I saw my first framed Van Gogh hanging on the wall -- the colors were mind-blowingly vivid! -- that my world was expanded and turned upside down. I don't know why my parents never took us to an art museum while growing up, however this mother has dragged her two daughters to at least one major art museum in every major city that we have visited -- including Boston (I just adore the MFA), Washington DC, New York, Cleveland, San Francisco, Atlanta, St. Louis, Cincinnati, Columbus, and Dayton. I hope others take this book to heart and have their own adventures in Artland... Highly recommended for all ages. This would be especially useful in art and creative writing classes.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ali

    "Imagine!" by Raúl Colón is a wordless picture book about a young boy's visit to an art museum in New York City. This book follows his adventures through the museum as the art exhibits come to do life and dance with him across the pages. The art pieces and he explore the city around them for the rest of the day. He even creates his own masterpiece on the side of a building with chalk. Before long, he returns home but still imagines the art pieces dancing through the night. After reading the auth "Imagine!" by Raúl Colón is a wordless picture book about a young boy's visit to an art museum in New York City. This book follows his adventures through the museum as the art exhibits come to do life and dance with him across the pages. The art pieces and he explore the city around them for the rest of the day. He even creates his own masterpiece on the side of a building with chalk. Before long, he returns home but still imagines the art pieces dancing through the night. After reading the author's note, you find out that the story is actually about Raúl Colón and the first trip he ever took to an art museum, and how it was a unique and freeing experience. He hopes that this story will encourage young children to imagine the possibilities in artwork, and lead them to explore museums around them. The illustrations throughout this book are incredible and do an excellent job of telling a story without the need for words/text. The title is perfect for the book, as the reader is forced to imagine the plot behind the story since there are no words. The extremely vivid and colorful illustrations bring the artwork to life as the young boy encounters them. I think that this book would be great for children for children first through fifth grade because they can interpret the story how they would like or they could try to follow the story with the pictures if they were a little older. I think "Imagine!" deserves the 2019 Caldecott Medal because it's illustrations are both unique thoughtfully done. The illustrations are unlike any that I have seen before and are slightly abstract which makes it even more interesting. The way that the illustrations tell the whole story without any text needed is something that makes this story stand out from the rest of picture storybooks. Children would love to follow this boy along with his journey exploring art, and would also really enjoy making their own interpretations of the story.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Randi

    The story depicts the visit of a boy living in New York City to the Museum of Modern Art. What he sees there transforms his life, as the paintings come to life, and the characters depicted in the works of art accompany him on a journey around the city. The story takes them all, via subway, to Coney Island for a ride in that storied amusement park’s roller coaster, the Cyclone, and then to the top of the Statue of Liberty. They patronize a hot dog stand and play in Central Park before returning to The story depicts the visit of a boy living in New York City to the Museum of Modern Art. What he sees there transforms his life, as the paintings come to life, and the characters depicted in the works of art accompany him on a journey around the city. The story takes them all, via subway, to Coney Island for a ride in that storied amusement park’s roller coaster, the Cyclone, and then to the top of the Statue of Liberty. They patronize a hot dog stand and play in Central Park before returning to the museum via taxi cab. The boy goes home to create his own painting on the wall of a vacant building in his neighborhood, a mural which incorporates the characters from the paintings (Pablo Picasso’s, Three Musicians; Henri Rousseau’s, The Sleeping Gypsy; Henri Matisse’s, Icarus). Raul Colon’s illustrations are done in watercolor, Prisma color pencils and lithograph pencils on Arches paper. The surrealistic, impressionist images are reminiscent of Geoges Seurat’s, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. The colors are earthy pastels, mostly browns, greens and blues. The book is wordless, giving the artist free reign on each page, unencumbered by the presence of a text. I think this book worthy of a Caldecott based on its general excellence of execution, and its interpretation of the story; the characters from each painting escape the boundaries of the artist’s canvas, and they and the boy escape into the city to enjoy their freedom as would a child on holiday. The images are as large and unencumbered and as bold as New York City itself, making a grand appeal to any child’s imagination.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Heidi

    I love this book for several reasons. I love the book because of the gorgeous art. Colon has become one of my favorite illustrators for this reason. The second thing I love about the book is the theme revolving around the power of imagination to help see and experience things we couldn't otherwise. In the book which is wordless, a young boy leaves his home, crosses a bridge, and visits an art museum. But as in so many other books that involve youngsters interacting with art in unusual ways (Jour I love this book for several reasons. I love the book because of the gorgeous art. Colon has become one of my favorite illustrators for this reason. The second thing I love about the book is the theme revolving around the power of imagination to help see and experience things we couldn't otherwise. In the book which is wordless, a young boy leaves his home, crosses a bridge, and visits an art museum. But as in so many other books that involve youngsters interacting with art in unusual ways (Journey by Aaron Becker, and Harold and the Purple Crayon come to mind) things change quickly. Some of the characters interact with the boy and then step out of their frames to go on an adventure with him, outside of the museum. After returning the characters to the museum the boy returns home, but along the way he sees the side of what seems to be an abandoned, lonely looking building. He stops and paints a picture of the adventure he and his 'friends' just went on, finally returning home a changed boy. It was interesting to read about the artist's reasons for creating the book, which he details in his author's note. The choice of characters from real life paintings also makes for some interesting pondering. All in all a wonderful book about the possibilities of art and human creativity.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Dena (Batch of Books)

    This is a wordless picture book about a boy who decides to go to an art museum. As he becomes engrossed in the paintings, the artwork comes to life! I've always loved wordless books. There's a beautiful art to telling a story only through pictures. While I adore the story of a young boy discovering a new passion and having an adventure in an art museum, I also love the subtle message to step outside your comfort zone and experience new things. This is a beautifully illustrated book that kids (and This is a wordless picture book about a boy who decides to go to an art museum. As he becomes engrossed in the paintings, the artwork comes to life! I've always loved wordless books. There's a beautiful art to telling a story only through pictures. While I adore the story of a young boy discovering a new passion and having an adventure in an art museum, I also love the subtle message to step outside your comfort zone and experience new things. This is a beautifully illustrated book that kids (and parents) will enjoy. Snag this one the next time you're at the library! Source: The publisher sent me a copy of this book.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Art begets art. In this wordless book, a young boy visits MOMA in New York (by himself!) and some of the characters in his favorite paintings (detailed in the Author's Note) break out of their frames and join him on a romp through the city. When they return in the evening, the boy is inspired to make his own creation in his neighborhood (did you see the chalk in his back pocket the whole time?). Raul Colon has a very unique, almost scratch-board-esque style. "The illustrations for this book are Art begets art. In this wordless book, a young boy visits MOMA in New York (by himself!) and some of the characters in his favorite paintings (detailed in the Author's Note) break out of their frames and join him on a romp through the city. When they return in the evening, the boy is inspired to make his own creation in his neighborhood (did you see the chalk in his back pocket the whole time?). Raul Colon has a very unique, almost scratch-board-esque style. "The illustrations for this book are rendered in watercolors, Prismacolor pencils, and lithograph pencils on Arches paper."

  13. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    Imagine! is another wonderful wordless picture book by Raul Colon to share with kids 4 - 8 during family reading time. Have the kids tell you the story about a boy who visits the Museum of Modern art and befriends the characters in many of the paintings there. The more stories kids tell in their own words, the better their sentence structure and writing will become. Museum trips will never be the same again.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Erin Buhr

    This wordless book follows a boy as he visits the Museum of Modern Art in New York City for the first time. I love the way the pictures come to life for the boy. They dance with him across the city and it is fun to spot different popular spots around New York in the pictures. This book reminds me a bit of KATIE MEETS THE IMPRESSIONISTS but more abstract - like the art he discovers perhaps. I love the wonder that is captured in the beautiful illustrations.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Carol Vanhook

    Imagine! Based on his own childhood love of art & museums, Raul Colon shows, in a wordless story, a boy going to an art museum one day. While there, famous art by Picasso, Rousseau, & Matisse come alive & interact with him. When it is time to go home, he escorts each characters back to its original work. On the way home, he creates a mural of these characters interacting. Isn't that what an artist hopes? Inspire us to IMAGINE & create! Raul includes an inspirational note at the b Imagine! Based on his own childhood love of art & museums, Raul Colon shows, in a wordless story, a boy going to an art museum one day. While there, famous art by Picasso, Rousseau, & Matisse come alive & interact with him. When it is time to go home, he escorts each characters back to its original work. On the way home, he creates a mural of these characters interacting. Isn't that what an artist hopes? Inspire us to IMAGINE & create! Raul includes an inspirational note at the book's end!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kris

    Whay a great book! Aptly named Imagine, it requires the reader to imagine what is happening as the pages turn. Many details will appear as you gaze at the illustrations, love the use of line to draw the eyes to important features in the art. So joyful! Be sure to read the authors note at the end. Recommended for all ages.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    I really like Raul Colon's work, and am sad that he never seems to get a nod from the Caldecott committee. Truthfully, my favorite this year for that award is a different title not done by Mr. Colon, but I wouldn't cry if he won. I first became aware of this artist when I read "Tomas and the Library Lady." Lovely, lovely work.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sandy Brehl

    A wordless homage to New york City, to MOMA, to engaging with art, to dreaming and to curiosity. Readers of many ages will find it appealing and intriguing, with a likely newfound interest in exploring art.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Patricia McLaughlin

    Magical! A strong contender for the 2018 Caldecott Award, this beautifully illustrated, well-crafted wordless story shows the importance of art in children’s lives as experienced through the vivid imagination of a young dreamer. Colon’s renderings of New York City are gorgeous, and the museum pieces are glorious. Wow, what a treasure trove of delight!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Pam

    Wordless book The vividly colored illustrations bring this story to life. A young man visits the Museum of Modern Art and the paintings come to life to share a day with him. As the title states, this is a terrific book to discuss dreaming and exploring new areas.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    A young boy explores the Museum of Modern Art and soon finds himself so inspired that he takes some of the art subjects along with him on an adventure in the city. A beautiful and inspiring look at how inspiration follows us wherever we go.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    Beautiful wordless book. Inspiring for the artist in all of us. Hopefully, you will grab your children and head to the nearest museum after reading this lovely picture book. Colón's interest in the arts are shared. Seems like a companion to his book, DRAW! Both are based on his childhood.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sheila

    wordless picture book. shows children how to use their imagination

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marcie

    1. I love The art. 2. I want to pair it with Draw before visits to museums. 3. Pair with Mordicai Gersteins 2016 The Sleeping Gypsy.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    Beautifully illustrated wordless book that encourages the reader to use not only their own imagination, but to follow along with the main character's imagination.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    Art and imagination come together as a child wanders NYC.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Angie Moore

    Stunning wordless book!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Miss Sarah

    An imaginative book about a boy visiting a museam and imagining the character's of the painting journingthrough his day with him. Very imaginative but no words. Elementary and up

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    I liked most of this, though it didn't pull me in as much as Draw did.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Edward Sullivan

    Art literally comes to life in this beautiful wordless picture book celebrating imagination.

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