Amherst, MA--Eric Carle is famous for his representations of cheerful suns and soulful moons. While he traditionally leaves his daytime skies the white of the paper, he evocatively paints his nighttime scenes in deep blues and indigos. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is pleased to present "The Art of Eric Carle: Night," on view from September 12, 2017 through March 18, 2018. The exhibition features original artwork from more than 20 Carle books, including Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me, Dream Snow, and The Very Quiet Cricket. Several pieces from Draw Me a Star are also included to mark the 25th anniversary of the book's publication.
Carle often sprinkles his nighttime images with twinkling stars, fireflies, and other creatures of the night. The moon--in all its phases--always displays a gentle face. "The calm moon is a source of comfort in the night," says Carle.
Visitors to "The Art of Eric Carle: Night" will recognize familiar nocturnal images from some of the artist's classic picture books. Ellen Keiter, the Museum's chief curator, says the idea for the exhibition occurred to her while she was looking through Carle's art; she found herself repeatedly lingering over his arresting nighttime scenes. "I was very taken with them. The blues really appealed to me. I wondered if there was enough nighttime imagery to assemble a show. I thought it could be a beautiful installation," said Keiter.
What she found will delight visitors--33 original collages. The selection on display--ranging in date from 1972 to 2015--provides a broad representation of Eric Carle's distinguished picture-book career. The exhibition includes collages from some of his most popular books like The Very Lonely Firefly and The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse to lesser known titles such as The Honey Bee and the Robber and The Secret Birthday Message.
"It was rewarding to do this research," said Keiter. "I found stunning sunsets and vast night skies. I hope visitors enjoy seeing Eric's work from this unique perspective."
Keiter encourages people to visit the Museum to see Carle's art firsthand: "The original collages are incredibly vibrant; their colors and textures really sing. Art always appears 'flatter' on the printed page," she said.
In addition to the art, guests to "The Art of Eric Carle: Night" are invited to make fun "moon shadows" on a heat-sensitive painted wall and to explore colors and patterns at two Starry Night light tables. A specially-constructed Night Walk creates a magical experience for visitors of all ages.
This exhibition is made possible through the generous support of the Hsin-Yi Foundation.
About The Carle
The mission of The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, a non-profit organization in Amherst, MA, is to inspire a love of art and reading through picture books. The only full-scale museum of its kind in the United States, The Carle collects, preserves, presents, and celebrates picture books and picture book illustrations from around the world. In addition to underscoring the cultural, historical, and artistic significance of picture books and their art form, The Carle offers educational programs that provide a foundation for arts integration and literacy. Eric Carle and his wife, the late Barbara Carle, founded the Museum in November 2002. Eric Carle is the renowned author and illustrator of more than 70 books, including the 1969 classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Since opening, the 40,000-square foot facility has served more than half a million visitors, including 30,000 schoolchildren. The Carle houses more than 13,000 objects, including 6,600 permanent collection illustrations. The Carle has three art galleries, an art studio, a theater, picture book and scholarly libraries, and educational programs for families, scholars, educators, and schoolchildren. Educational offerings include professional training for educators around the country and Master's degree programs in children's literature with Simmons College. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday 12 noon to 5 p.m. Open Mondays in July and August and during MA school vacation weeks. Admission is $9 for adults, $6 for children under 18, and $22.50 for a family of four. For further information and directions, call 413-559-6300 or visit the Museum's website at