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Crockett Johnson and Ruth KraussHow an Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children's Literature$
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Philip Nel

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781617036248

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781617036248.001.0001

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Theorems in Color, Poems on Stage

Theorems in Color, Poems on Stage

(p.231) 24 Theorems in Color, Poems on Stage
Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss

Philip Nel

University Press of Mississippi

Only sixteen months after deciding to pursue painting, Crockett Johnson held his first exhibition, Abstractions of Abstractions: Schematic Paintings Deriving from Axioms and Theorems of Geometry, from Pythagoras to Apollonius of Perga, and from Desargues and Kepler to the Twentieth Century, at the Glezer Gallery in New York on April 5, 1967. While the exhibition program validated Johnson’s status as a painter, scholar of mathematics, and cartoonist, Ruth Krauss knew she was a poet and playwright, even as she continued to write children’s books. By the spring of 1967, she had completed the text and artwork for This Thumbprint and had finished What a Fine Day For..., a hybrid of her books for children and her poem plays for adults. In addition, Krauss had created a dummy for a new book, I Write It. After the Glezer Gallery exhibit, Johnson produced more paintings related to circle squaring, one of the three infamous unsolved compass and straight-edge problems of the classical Greeks. Meanwhile, Krauss sent more poetry to Harper in hopes of convincing her editors to publish a new book by her.

Keywords:   painting, Crockett Johnson, exhibition, Ruth Krauss, children’s books, This Thumbprint, plays, I Write It, circle squaring, poetry

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