Gaudi - Architect of Imagination


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About the Author

Susan B. Katz is an award-winning Spanish bilingual author/illustrator; National Board Certified Teacher; and literacy specialist. She has published 20 books, including The Story of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Frida Kahlo, and Meditation Station. She also launched and ran Facebook and Instagram's author vertical. Susan lived and worked in Spain, and studied ceramics there. She later turned two boxes of broken ceramics into a mosaic business, inspired by Gaudí's masterpieces. She lives near San Francisco, CA. Find out more about her at

Linda Schwalbe studied illustration at the Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design Halle and at the? Berlin University of the Arts. Inspired by discoveries and adventures, music and nature, she is happiest painting with acrylics. She is the author/illustrator of Ida and the World Beyond Mount Kaiserzipf and winner of the prestigious Serafina Award. This is Linda Schwalbe’s second book for NorthSouth. She lives and works in Leipzig, Germany.


"This is a remarkably interpretive depiction of a genius builder/architect. Gaudi comes to life on the page"-- "Unpacking the POWER of Picture Books"

"A stunning introduction to the life of innovative architect Antoni Gaudi. Beautifully colored pages are filled with curves and geometric shapes that guide readers through the decades of Gaudi's life. The pictures flow one to the other just like Gaudi's creations curve and sparkle. Close attention reveals charming details and additional information.This literary biography is at home in the art, architecture, or biography sections of any library. It will surely pique interest in this genius and inspire visits to Gaudi's creations, if only online." STARRED REVIEW-- "School Library Journal"

Architect Antoni Gaud�, a Spanish boy "with wobbly legs" who "felt different from everyone else," transformed his childhood observations about nature into breathtaking architectural marvels. His life is celebrated in this admiring and eccentric picture-book biography, which opens with Gaud�'s artistic and infirm youth, covers his university training, and surveys several of the most notable mosaics Gaud� designed. Several open-ended threads in the text may raise questions among inquisitive readers, while sophisticated vocabulary (undulating, grandiose) will suit a more-advanced audience. The book includes a map placing 10 Gaud� masterpieces around Barcelona, quotes (without sources) from Gaud�, and an endnote with additional biographical details. A supplemental pick for STEAM and biographical collections. -- "Booklist"

A Spanish boy with "wobbly legs" grows up to be an architect known for his curved and broken lines. In this picture-book biography, readers learn that Antonio Gaud� (1852-1926) didn't follow in the footsteps of his father, a metalsmith, because he "had an illness that made it hard for him to walk." Instead, as a child, he rode a donkey around the Catalan countryside, admiring the shapes and curves of the world around him. Educated as an architect, he began to make art and construct buildings that incorporated those curves and broken lines. With the support of a patron Count Escub� G�ell, he designed and supervised the construction of houses, a park, and even a cathedral in Barcelona. Work continues on La Sagrada Fam�lia cathedral even today. Katz, who is also an artist whose own mosaic art reflects Gaud�'s influence, has written a smoothly flowing overview of the architect's life, giving prominence to his patron's support and incorporating a few direct but unsourced quotations. She concludes with a schematic map showing Gaud�'s major buildings in Barcelona and a short afterword. Schwalbe's stylized acrylic paintings are lively and engaging, full of curves, fantastic shapes, and surprising colors. They nicely reflect Gaud�'s work and would show well in a storytime. A solid biography of an important artist.-- "Kirkus Reviews"

Gaudi is the story of Antoni Gaudi, a Spanish architect and artist well known for this UNESCO world heritage site buildings in Barcelona. The beautiful, somewhat abstract, very unique illustrations are beautiful and very inviting. This book, and the story within it, are both the true definition of STEAM, Science/Math meet Art. As a grade 3 teacher, I would definitely consider purchasing a copy of this book for my classroom library. The text is probably too difficult for most early years students to read themselves, but I could see reading this story to my class or using it with upper elementary students. I think that the illustrations are the perfect for inspiring children to create their own art. I would definitely recommend this book to teachers and families of children in the 5-12 age range. The number of connections to curricular content are infinite and the story itself is inspirational. -- "Teach Read Inspire Blog"

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