Keats, Ezra Jack

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American illustrator and author of children's books; won the Caldecott Medal in 1963 for The snowy day (1962).

From the description of Papers, 1962-1980 (bulk 1963-1964). (University of Minnesota, Minneapolis). WorldCat record id: 62444233

From the description of Our rice village in Cambodia : production material, ca. 1963. (University of Minnesota, Minneapolis). WorldCat record id: 62451779

From the description of Zoo, where are you? : production material. (University of Minnesota, Minneapolis). WorldCat record id: 62406344

Ezra Jack Keats (1916-1983) was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. to Polish immigrant parents. After working as a mural painter for the Works Progress Administration during the Depression and as a comics illustrator, he illustrated his first children's book in 1954. He went on to write and/or illustrate more than 85 books for children. Keats was innovative in his use of minority children as central characters, such as the African American boy in the Caldecott Medal-winning The snowy day.

From the description of Ezra Jack Keats papers, 1916-1997 [manuscript]. (University of Southern Mississippi, Regional Campus). WorldCat record id: 711793816

Ezra Jack Keats was born March 11, 1916 in Brooklyn, New York. He attended the Art Students League and studied painting with the noted artist and children's book illustrator Jean Charlot. He worked as a muralist for the W.P.A. during the Depression, and later as an instructor at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. In 1954 he illustrated his first book for children, Jubilant for Sure, by Elizabeth C. Lansing. During his career Keats illustrated books for many different authors and in 1960 he illustrated and co-wrote with Pat Cherr the bilingual book, My Dog is Lost! or, Me Perro Se Ha Perdido . In 1962 he wrote and illustrated The Snowy Day, which was widely praised by critics for his unique style of blending painting and collage in vivid colors, as well as for depicting African American children in natural surroundings. The book won the Caldecott Medal in 1963. Critics have lauded Keats' works both for his texts and his illustrations, calling his stories universal, classless, timeless, and his illustrations notable for innovative use of collage. Keats died on May 6, 1983 in New York City.

Biographical Sources: Something About the Author vols. 14, 34, 57; Children's Literature Review, vol. 35; Twentieth Century Children's Writers, 3rd ed. pp.510-11

From the guide to the Ezra Jack Keats papers, 1962-1980, (University of Minnesota Libraries Children's Literature Research Collections [clrc])

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Keats, Ezra Jack. Ezra Jack Keats papers, 1916-1997 [manuscript]. University of Southern Mississippi, Regional Campus, Joseph Anderson Cook Library
creatorOf Carey, Darrell. Peter's chair [mixed materials]. Harford County Public Library
creatorOf Keats, Ezra Jack. Our rice village in Cambodia : production material, ca. 1963. University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
creatorOf Keats, Ezra Jack. Papers, 1962-1980 (bulk 1963-1964). University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
creatorOf Ezra Jack Keats papers, 1962-1980 University of Minnesota Libraries Children's Literature Research Collections [clrc]
creatorOf Keats, Ezra Jack. Zoo, where are you? : production material. University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
referencedIn Edna Edwards Interviews with Children's Authors and Illustrators, 1966-1976 Loyola Marymount University. William H. Hannon Library. Department of Archives and Special Collections.
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith Edwards, Edna. person
associatedWith McGovern, Ann. person
associatedWith Tooze, Ruth. person
associatedWith University of Southern Mississippi. de Grummond Children's Literature Collection. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Cambodia
Subject
Children's literature, American--Illustrations
Zoos--Fiction
Children's literature, American--20th century
Treasure hunts--Juvenile fiction
Children's literature, American
Treasure hunt--Fiction
Zoos--Juvenile fiction
Occupation
Illustrator
Function

Person

Birth 1916-03-11

Death 1983-05-06

Americans

English

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