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Martin Provensen

Born: 1916 in Chicago, Illinois
Died: March 27, 1987

Pen Name: None

Connection to Illinois: Provensen was born in Chicago and attended the Art Institute of Chicago.

Biography: Martin Provensen was an American author-illustrator who teamed with his wife, Alice, to create children's books. There was a remarkable similarity to the couple's early histories. Both were born in Chicago, Illinois, and both moved to California when they were twelve. Both received scholarships to the Art Institute of Chicago, and both attended the University of California, though at separate campuses. After college, Alice went to work with Walter Lantz Studio, the creators of Woody Woodpecker, and Martin took work with the rival Walt Disney Studio, where he collaborated on Dumbo, Fantasia, and Pinocchio.The pair met in 1943 when Martin, working as a creator of training films for the American military, was assigned to the Walter Lantz Studio. They were married in 1944 and began illustrating children's books together. They shared work on all of the pictures, passing them back and forth until they were completely satisfie with the results. After they were married, they resettled in Washington, D.C., where they worked on war-related projects. Following the end of the war, they moved to New York City, where a friend assisted them in finding their first job, illustrating The Fireside Book of Folk Songs. In 1952, Tony the Tiger, designed by Martin, debuted as a Kellogg's mascot. Following that, they illustrated several Little Golden Books and wrote many books based on Maple Hill Farm, their home in New York State. They received the Caldecott Honor Medal for their illustration of ''A Visit to William Blake's Inn'', by Nancy Willard. They were further recognized just two years later, when they received the Caldecott Medal for ''A Glorious Flight''. The Provensens have been on the New York Times list of the Ten Best Illustrated Books eight times. In all, the couple wrote and illustrated more than 50 books.

  • '''''A Visit to William Blake's Inn'''''
  • -- Caldecott Honor Medal '''''A Glorious Flight'''''
  • -- Caldecott Medal

Primary Literary Genre(s): Fiction

Primary Audience(s): Children

Martin Provensen on WorldCat :

Selected Titles

  The glorious flight :
ISBN: 0670342599 OCLC: 8430315

A biography of the man whose fascination with flying machines produced the Blériot XI, which crossed the English Channel in thirty-seven minutes in the early 1900s.

  The year at Maple Hill Farm.
ISBN: 1586690574 OCLC: 54854579

Childcraft Education Corp., [Lancaster, PA] : ©2003.

Describes the seasonal changes on a farm and surrounding countryside throughout the year. The activity guide as lots of ideas for using these and other items to teach the basic concept of the calendar.