BRAVO! Chris Raschka
1/14/2012 - 4/1/2012

Congratulations to Chris Raschka, recipient of the 2012 Caldecott Medal for A Ball for Daisy. The award was announced on January 23, 2012. Click here to read about it!

Step into the world of jazz legends Charlie Parker, Thelonius Monk, and John Coltrane, and discover stories of family and friendship, all illustrated with the splashes of color, energetic shapes, and rhythmic lines that are the hallmark of author-illustrator Chris Raschka.

BRAVO! Chris Raschka is an exhibition of nearly 60 of the artist's award-winning illustrations. Opening January 14, the exhibition continues through April 1.

With over 50 books to his name, Raschka has four times been listed on the Ten Best Illustrated Books of the Year by The New York Times Book Review. Of Charlie Parker Played Be Bop — constructed like a jazz piece with its text forming the rhythm and cadence of be bop — Publishers Weekly said he "stretched the definition of picture book." Yo! Yes? — with its simple illustrations and 34 well-chosen words — conveys volumes about language, expression, and friendship. And of Caldecott Medal winner The Hello, Goodbye Window, the selection committee said, “With a few energetic lines, Raschka suggests a world filled with affection and humor. The richly textured tones of these expressive illustrations convey the emotional warmth of the intergenerational connection.” 

In his words, “My books are my own thoughts about things that are important to me. I work through how I feel about such things as language, art, music, and friendship with these loose, colorful, and slightly wild drawings.”

The exhibition presents artworks from a dozen children’s books, among them: Mysterious Thelonius, John Coltrane’s Giant Steps, Peter and the Wolf, The Grasshopper’s Song, and A Foot in the Mouth, as well as those named above. 

This exhibition and teacher guide were organized by National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature, Abilene, Texas. 

What's Pictured: (Above) Mysterious Thelonius, 1997, watercolor, © Chris Raschka


In February, Joslyn Art Museum will host Chris Raschka for programs presented for both special audiences and the general public.

On Thursday, February 23, Raschka will be on board to speak to educators during the Museum's Thursdays for Teachers program. For details, teachers may call (402) 661-3847.

On February 23 and 24, Skinner Magnet Center students will visit Joslyn to meet and learn from the artist in an experience where visual art, literature, and music collide.

The general public's chance to meet the artist comes on Saturday, February 25, when Raschka will be Joslyn's guest at a very special Saturday Surprise! Hear the artist speak in the Abbott Lecture Hall at 10:30 am (seating is first come, first served). A free art-making activity will be offered from 10 am to noon! 

Chris Raschka’s visit to Joslyn to work with schools and families is supported by the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Omaha Family Literacy Partnership, the Nebraska Arts Council, Carol Gendler, and Omaha Public Library.