Meet…SIDNEY NOLAN by Yvonne Mes
Published by Random House Australia
The ‘Meet…’ series of picture books introduces famous characters in Australian history to youngsters, telling the true stories of these notable people through simple text and pictures.
Meet…SIDNEY NOLAN is the latest in a series by various authors and illustrators that to date includes the stories of Ned Kelly, Mary McKillop, Captain Cook, the ANZACS, Douglas Mawson, Nancy Bird Walton, Banjo Paterson and Weary Dunlop.
Meet... SIDNEY NOLAN describes Nolan’s journey from working in the art department of a hat factory, to stowing away on a ship in order to reach the art and culture of London and Europe. We learn that Nolan was caught and sent back to Australia, where he was lucky enough to meet a modern art connoisseur who took him under his wing and introduced him to artists, poets, writers and musicians who became his close friends.
There followed conscription into the army, which he refused and escaped from, hiding out in sympathetic friends’ homes as an outlaw.
Youngsters will read about Sidney Nolan portraying on canvas his feelings about war and of being on the run for a while; emotions that sometimes lay hidden behind the famous mask in his paintings of another outlaw, Ned Kelly.
Readers are left with the knowledge that through his art, Nolan helped Australia forge its own identity.
A timeline at the end of the book lists key dates in the sequence of Nolan’s lifetime.
The ‘Meet…’ picture book series is a unique way to bring to life for young readers the stories of key figures in Australian history. Like the other books, this latest in the series will interest both children and adults.
CKT Book Reviewer
Author: Yvonne Mes
Illustrator: Sandra Eterovic
Title: Meet…SIDNEY NOLAN
Publisher: Random House Australia
Published: October 2015