Monday, September 24, 2012

Georgia in Hawaii: When Georgia O’Keefe Painted What She Pleased

Author: Amy Novesky
Illustrator: Yuyi Morales
Publisher: Harcourt Brace
Publication Date: 2012
Genre/Format: Picture Book
Classification: Juvenile Fiction

Summary:  Georgia O’Keefe sailed to the Hawaiian Islands in 1939 courtesy of the Hawaiian Pineapple Company (later known as Dole). This company wanted Ms. O’Keefe to create two paintings to promote the pineapple business and benefits of pineapple juice.  Instead she fell in love with the Hawaiian landscapes and painted flowers, the islands and the sea.

My thoughts and connections: In the early 1980’s my parents moved to the Big Island of Hawaii and I fell in love with the culture and the landscape. Akaka Falls on the Hilo side of the Big Island has the most beautiful flowers and fauna I’ve ever seen.  The pictures in this book truly captured the very essence of family photographs and the pictures that are etched in my mind.
The book includes both an author’s note and an illustrator’s note page, map of the Hawaiian Islands, bibliography and end papers that truly capture the essence Georgia O’Keefe favorite Hawaiian flowers.

Read Together:   grades K-3
Read without help: grades 3-12
Other Book Connections: 

Through Georgia’s Eyes by Rachel Victoria Rodriquez

Snippet of Text:

Georgia painted waterfalls and green pleated mountains, lava hardened into fantastic shapes and delicate, feathered fishhooks that she collected like seashells. And Georgia painted the blue, blue sea.” (Unnumbered page)
“Georgia had created nearly twenty paintings of Hawaii. But she had not painted a pineapple. Instead she gave the Hawaiian Pineapple Company paintings of a heliconia flower and a papaya tree.  They were not happy. They wanted a pineapple. Georgia was not happy either. She was not going to be told what to paint.” (Unnumbered page)
Connections to Writing: ExpositoryMost of us travel to Hawaii by airplane; however that was not the case when Georgia O’Keefe traveled there at the request of the Hawaiian Pineapple Company.  (1) Research the types of transportation Ms. O’Keefe took to travel from her home in New York City to Honolulu, Hawaii. (2)  Georgia O’Keefe was a major figure in American art. In this era of school budget cutting, many fine arts teachers are being told they no longer have a teaching position. Explain why this is not a good decision for students.
Connections to Writing: Narrative— (1) Write a simulated diary journal or blog as if you were Georgia O’Keefe as she travels from New York City to Honolulu, Hawaii. (2) Create an obituary celebrating the life of Georgia O’Keefe.
Connections to Art: Study the mediums Georgia O’Keefe

Topics Covered: Art, Hawaii, flowers, landscape, The Hawaiian Pineapple Company
Translated to other languages: No
Other formats: None