New York: Simon and Schuster, 1960. Spiral-bound volume, measuring 8.25 x 11 inches: . Original color pictorial wrappers. “Note to Parents and Teachers” on verso of front wrapper. Text printed on yellow, white, and blue paper, with various decorations; many pages left blank for a child to complete. Front wrapper creased with two closed tears; small chip to lower wrapper; final page spotted red.
First edition, second printing, of this interactive drawing book for children. The editors argue that conventional coloring books are “insulting to [children’s] imagination and intelligence.” In contrast, The Poetry-Drawing Book offers young readers the opportunity to illustrate the text of forty different poems, however inspiration strikes them, and to sign their original contributions: “YOU are the artist from here on.” Featured poems include Edward Lear’s “There Was an Old Man with a Beard,” Robert Louis Stevenson’s “The Swing,” and Gelett Burgess’s “The Purple Cow.” A graphically intriguing example of the turn, in the 1960s, to a more child-centered model of art education in the United States.