Would you like to learn a little more about art around the world with your little ones? Here are 10 art books for kids from across the globe that will delight the whole family!
One of our favorite ways to learn about a different place is to read art books for kids. Art has a way of transporting us to a different time and place, and get a feel for the culture in addition to just facts.
While I have many, many children’s books about art that I love, these are ones that transport readers to places around the world. Read on for a list of some of our favorite art books for kids from across the globe!
10 Art Books for Kids from Around the World
For your convenience, this post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.
THE MAGICAL TREE: A CHILDREN’S BOOK INSPIRED BY GUSTAV KLIMT, by Myriam Ouyessad
This picture book is inspired by Klimt’s mural The Tree of Life, and the illustrations are downright ethereal. The story matches the allegory, and kids will love perusing the details that are reminiscent of Klimt’s own art. This art book for kids will transport you straight to Austria!
A STROLL WITH MR. GAUDI, by Pau Estrada (Author), Juventud (Editor)
Gaudi’s sometimes kooky colors and interesting shapes are engaging for kids of all ages. This children’s art book takes readers on a journey through his most important works in the city of Barcelona.
WHERE IS THE FROG?: A CHILDREN’S BOOK INSPIRED BY CLAUDE MONET, by Geraldine Elschner (Author), Stephane Girel (Illustrator)
While Linnea in Monet’s Garden is far more popular (and is delightful), I prefer this darling book for younger readers. Told from the perspective of a young frog at Monet’s garden oasis of Giverny, listeners are drawn into the world that inspired Monet’s works.
ANTSY ANSEL: ANSEL ADAMS, A LIFE IN NATURE, by Cindy Jenson-Elliott (Author), Christy Hale (Illustrator)
This isn’t a typical children’s art book in that is doesn’t prominently feature paintings or painters, but it was the perfect read prior to a trip to Yosemite. We loved learning more about Ansel and his boyhood and the beauty that inspired his works.
THE NOISY PAINTBOX: THE COLORS AND SOUNDS OF KANDINSKY’S ABSTRACT ART, by Barb Rosenstock (Author), Mary GrandPre (Illustrator)
The life and upbringing of Vasya Kandinsky are fascinating, especially as he becomes exposed to art. His synesthesia (he would “hear” colors) makes the book vibrant and absorbing.
THE FANTASTIC JUNGLES OF HENRI ROUSSEAU, by Michelle Markel (Author), Amanda Hall (Illustrator)
Henri Rousseau didn’t have formal artistic training, so he painted what he imagined. He imagined far off lands and animals and jungles, and those are the shapes and forms that appeared. This vibrant children’s art book envelops readers young and old in Rousseau’s imaginations.
FRIDA KAHLO AND HER ANIMALITOS, by Monica Brown (Author), John Parra (Illustrator)
This book has won all kinds of children’s book awards, and for good reason. The gorgeous illustrations and vibrant colors are reminiscent of Kahlo’s work and her inspiration from the indigenous peoples of Mexico. Animals were influential in her work, and readers will virtually walk the streets of Mexico as they get to know these delightful animal characters. (And here is another terrific art book list that shares this book and lots of others.)
GREAT AMERICAN ARTISTS FOR KIDS: HANDS-ON ART EXPERIENCES IN THE STYLES OF GREAT AMERICAN MASTERS, by MaryAnn F. Kohl (Author), Kim Solga (Author)
If you’re looking for something a bit more interactive, this children’s art book is a fantastic choice. Each featured artist has a short biography paired with an art activity in the artist’s style. They’re perfect for more tactile kids.
THE GREAT WAVE: A CHILDREN’S BOOK INSPIRED BY HOKUSAI, by Veronique Massenot (Author), Bruno Pilorget (Illustrator)
Hokusai’s woodcut “The Great Wave” is famous the world over, and kids will love this art book for kids based on the actual artwork. In this fictional account, a young boy is unbreakably connected to the artistic wave. Children will love following the story and transporting their minds to the Japanese inspiration for Hokusai’s style.
VINCENT CAN’T SLEEP: VAN GOGH PAINTS THE NIGHT SKY, by Barb Rosenstock (Author), Mary GrandPre (Illustrator)
The lilting text and beautiful illustrations will transport readers directly to the land of Van Gogh’s inspiration. Little readers will imagine they’re right there with the artist, ready to paint their own starry nights.
BONUS 11TH! This one is more for babies, but it’s just darling so I had to share.
IN THE GARDEN WITH VAN GOGH, by Julie Merberg & Suzanne Bober
This whole series of art board books is perfect for babies and toddlers. They show reproductions of actual pieces by the artists, and have a lilting text to accompany the images. As far as art board books go, these are some of the very best.
IF YOU LIKED THIS POST ABOUT TRAVEL BOOKS FOR KIDS, YOU MIGHT LIKE THESE POSTS, TOO:
- 12 Amazing Fiction Travel Books for Kids
- 26 San Francisco Children’s Books
- 16 Nonfiction Books for Kids from Around the World