Monday, February 25, 2013

An Exhibit: Vintage Illustrations by Children

As a mother of young children, I'm interested to know what they perceive about the world around them by looking at their artwork.  Sometimes it is sloppy and decidedly uninspired, but other times the joy that can be read is really very emotionally valuable.

Recently, I came upon these drawings by Swiss school children which will be on display at the National Museum in Switzerland until March 17.

All of these were created for an annual contest for Swiss school children.  The winning drawings earned a spot in the yearly calendar created by the sponsor.

I thought I'd share these:

1939 (Artist Unknown) A Day at the Fair

1941 Artist known to be a 13 year old girl. Childhood utopia, during a politically charged time in central Europe.

1940 (Artist Unknown) La Familglia .  Switzerland is surrounded by
facist states when this was drawn.  The cool atmosphere clearly
 perceived by the child artist as shown by the mother clinging to the
bedding and the angular lines of the drawing itself.


  1. You can really tell a lot about a child from the drawings they make. I love seeing cheerful ones from my niece and nephews :)

  2. I can't believe how much that last one looks like political propaganda from that era —the stances, profiles...
    In fact, I find these to be more calmed and collected than children's drawings tend to be.
    Thank you for sharing them!

  3. Wow! these are amazing! thanks for sharing

  4. I am impressed by the complexity of these drawings. What I am interested is how have children drawings changed historically. I am afraid children have lost their imagination thanks to too much multimedia and I applaud all parents who actually sit with their kids and draw. I personally love to do that!

  5. These are so elaborate for children! The last picture especially is so interesting. You can definitely see the cultural influences coming through in the picture. Kids are perceptive.

  6. Wonderful. I really like the first two. The last one is interesting, especially the way the plant kind of mirrors the dad's arms.

  7. Lovely! Such talent. Wonder what kind of work they went on to do when they grew up... I especially love the childhood utopia. Thanks for sharing.


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