Blue: A History of the Color as Deep as the Sea and as Wide as the Sky

Blue: A History of the Color as Deep as the Sea and as Wide as the Sky

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Discover a world of creativity and tradition in this fascinating picture book that explores the history and cultural significance of the color blue. From a critically acclaimed author and an award-winning illustrator comes a vivid, gorgeous book for readers of all ages.

For centuries, blue powders and dyes were some of the most sought-after materials in the world. Ancient Afghan painters ground mass quantities of sapphire rocks to use for their paints, while snails were harvested in Eurasia for the tiny amounts of blue that their bodies would release.
 
And then there was indigo, which was so valuable that American plantations grew it as a cash crop on the backs of African slaves. It wasn’t until 1905, when Adolf von Baeyer created a chemical blue dye, that blue could be used for anything and everything—most notably that uniform of workers everywhere, blue jeans.

With stunning illustrations by Caldecott Honor Artist Daniel Minter, this vibrant and fascinating picture book follows one color’s journey through time and across the world, as it becomes the blue we know today.

About the Authors

Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond is the author of Powder Necklace, which Publishers Weekly called “a winning debut.” She was a 2019 Edward Albee Foundation Fellow, a 2018 Pa Gya! Literary Festival Guest Author, a 2018 Ake Arts and Book Festival Guest Author, a 2018 Hobart Festival of Women Writers Guest Author, a 2017 Aspen Ideas Festival Scholar, a 2016 Hedgbrook Writer-in-Residence, a 2015 Rhode Island Writers Colony Writer-in-Residence, and in both 2015 and 2014, she was shortlisted for a Miles Morland Writing Scholarship. In April 2015, she was the opening speaker at TEDxAccra. Every month, Brew-Hammond co-leads a monthly writing fellowship at Manhattan’s Center for Faith and Work.

Daniel Minter is a fine artist and illustrator. His paintings, carvings, block prints and sculptures have been exhibited at galleries and museums both nationally and internationally. He has illustrated numerous books for children, and is the recipient of the Coretta Scott King Illustration Honor and Caldecott Honor. He lives in Portland, Maine with his family.

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