Books for Children / Understanding art

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The Independent Culture
'ENTREZ] I love weekends, don't you? . . . My friends used to call me a 'Sunday painter' and I was, when I had my job as a customs inspector . . .' So begins A Weekend with Rousseau by Gilles Plazy (Rizzoli pounds 12.95), art history as cod autobiography. Good reproductions of the paintings (as in The Football Players, right) and helpful captions ensure that information takes precedence over reader-friendly guff. Velasquez, Leonardo, Rembrandt, Renoir, Picasso all get the Weekend series treatment. Above, an American Indian painted buffalo skin from The Great Art Adventure by Bob Knox (Rizzoli pounds 10.50), which also adopts a light touch, touring the Museum of World Art in the company of two children who inviegle themselves into new versions of the works. Juliet Heslewood tells it straight in The History of Western Painting (Belitha pounds 9.99), an overview from cave painting to Warhol: less inspiration, longer shelf-life.

(Photograph omitted)