Picture Our JourneyOctober 3, 2021 - January 23, 2022
ARRIVALS, on view in the Museum's main galleries, traces a series of arrival moments to show how artists have explored myths and narratives around what it means to be American. In conjunction with this exhibition, the Learning Center features original children’s picture book art that shares personal yet universal stories of immigration. Through illustrations and words, these stories give voice to topics such as the struggle to belong in one’s new home, the pain of separation, and the ties that bind immigrants to their country and culture of origin. In a country filled with families that trace their roots back to other homelands, these stories have resonated throughout American history and have shaped the vibrant fabric of our inclusive nation. The selected books in Picture Our Journey highlight immigration stories from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East from the perspective of children and families. This interactive, family-friendly space is open to the public during regular KMA hours and will also include a library and bibliography of children’s books on the subject of immigration, hands-on art activities, and prompts for visitors to craft personal narratives.
The exhibition features artworks from eight poignant books that explore different topics related to immigration.
The struggle to belong in their new country is explored in:
Be Prepared, written and illustrated by Vera Brosgol, an autobiographical graphic novel about a Russian girl who desperately wants to fit in with her peers and discovers the value of true friendship.
Dreamers, written and illustrated by Yuyi Morales, a picture book memoir about coming to the U.S. with her infant son and finding her way in a new place, and navigating an unfamiliar world and finding the best parts of it.
My Name is Sangoel, written by Karen Lynn Williams and Khadra Mohammed and illustrated by Catherine Stock about a Sudanese boy who devises an ingenious solution to the problem that his new classmates can’t pronounce his name, and in the process he begins to feel at home.
The pain of separation is the focus of:
Mama’s Nightingale: A Story of Immigration and Separation, written by Edwidge Danticat and illustrated by Leslie Staub, about a young Haitian-American girl whose mother has been incarcerated as an illegal immigrant. The girl, Saya, finds a way to share her story in hopes of uniting her family again.
The ties that bind immigrants and their descendants to their country and culture of origin are personally described in
All the Way to America: The Story of a Big Italian Family and a Little Shovel, written and illustrated by Dan Yaccarino, whose great-grandfather arrived at Ellis Island with a small shovel and his parents’ good advice: “Work hard, but remember to enjoy life, and never forget your family.”
My Chinatown: One Year in Poems, written and illustrated by Kam Mak, an homage to family, culture, and a childhood spent in one of the most striking places in any city—Chinatown.
The Keeping Quilt, written and illustrated by Patricia Polacco, who tells the story of her own family and a quilt that remains a symbol of their enduring love and faith.
Saffron Ice Cream, written and illustrated by Rashin Kheiriyeh about young Rashin who is excited about her first visit to the beach in her family's new home and remembers what beach trips were like in Iran.
Explore Picture Our Journey
The selected books in Picture Our Journey highlight immigration stories from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East from the perspective of children and families. The exhibition features artworks from eight poignant books that explore different topics related to immigration.morelessIllustrated Checklist (PDF)
Picture Our Journey Exhibition Features Immigration Stories Through Original Children’s Picture Book ArtPress Release (PDF) (PDF)
Picture Our Journey features original children’s picture book art that shares personal yet universal stories of immigration. Through illustrations and words, these stories give voice to topics such as the struggle to belong in one’s new home, the pain of separation, and the ties that bind immigrants to their country and culture of origin.morelessFamily Guide (PDF) (PDF)
The Katonah Museum of Art’s Social Story helps prepare children and their families for their visit to the Museum – great for family visitors with children on the autism spectrum, first-time visitors, and anyone who likes to prepare for being in a new environment.morelessSocial Story (PDF) (PDF)
ARRIVALS is made possible in part by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, Humanities New York, the Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area, and the International Fine Print Dealers Association Foundation. Support for the exhibition catalogue is made possible by the Wyeth Foundation for American Art. Support for the exhibition, publication, and programs is also provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art. Additional support for the exhibition has been provided by Yvonne Pollack and the Katonah Museum of Art Exhibition Patrons, including Judith and Anthony B. Evnin, Ellen and Bob Grimes, and Betty Himmel.
Vera Brosgol, “Hey, Vera, where’s your doll?” from Be Prepared [First Second, 2018]. Ink on Bristol board. Courtesy of the artist. © Vera Brosgol, 2018
Yuyi Morales, “Unbelievable. Surprising.” from Dreamers/Soñadores [Holiday House Publishing, Inc./Neal Porter Books, 2018]. Giclee print on archival paper. Courtesy of the artist. © Yuyi Morales, 2018
Catherine Stock, “All the children crowded around,” from My name is Sangoel, by Karen Lynn Williams and Khadra Mohammed [Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, 2009]. Watercolor. Courtesy of the artist. © Catherine Stock, 2009
Leslie Staub, “The next time we visit Mama,” from Mama’s Nightingale: A Story of Immigration and Separation, by Edwidge Danticat [Dial Books for Young Readers, 2015]. Oil on paper. Courtesy of the artist and LeMieux Gallery, New Orleans, LA. © Leslie Staub, 2015
Dan Yaccarino, “It was a long journey.” from All the Way to America: The Story of a Big Italian Family and a Little Shovel [Alfred A. Knopf, 2011]. Gouache on watercolor paper. Courtesy of the artist. © Dan Yaccarino, 2011
Kam Mak, Animal Chess Game from My Chinatown: One Year in Poems [HarperCollins, 2002]. Oil on gesso. Courtesy of the artist. © Kam Mak / HarperCollins, 2002
Rashin Kheiriyeh, “A block from the beach,” from Saffron Ice Cream [Arthur A. Levine Books, 2018]. Oil on textured paper. Courtesy of the artist. © Rashin Kheiriyeh, 2018
Patricia Polacco, “And so it was.” from The Keeping Quilt [Simon & Schuster, 1988]. Graphite and felt-tip pen on paper. Courtesy of University of Findlay's Mazza Museum. © Patricia Polacco, 2018