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Reviewed by Lucy Black, Librarian, Mt Cook School Wellington
Opening sentence
Just like you, Len started being an artist when he was a kid.
'Ziggle!' is an interactive art history book created by Rebecca Fawkner, with support from the Govett-Brewster art gallery.

The 166 full page book weaves together Len Lye’s life story with 65 inspirational art activities for young people to try. Len’s life story is fascinating and empowering; he lived through foster care, poverty, grief and war and still had a huge appetite for learning and expanding his art practice.

Fawkner carefully pulls aspects of Len’s artistic process out from the historical facts and uses those aspects as the building blocks of tasks for the reader. Some of the activities include drawing emotions, scratching patterns into dry paint, making brain cell mobiles, drawing with light, making patterns with water and using found objects to make sculptures.

I would say 'Ziggle!' is heavier on the art and lighter on the history; it’s not a full historical biography. This is an activity book to draft, sketch and work in, with blank squares for the reader to fill with art.

As a school librarian, I prefer activity books that aren’t interactive and require the artist to use their own materials as this format means only one artist could fill the pages. 'Ziggle!' could be a great resource for an art loving parent and child to work through or for a classroom teacher to pull ideas from for a fun and in depth Len Lye study.
Publisher: Massey University Press
ISBN: 9781991016409
Format: Paperback
Publication: Sep 2023
Ages: 7-12 years
Themes: Creativity, inspiration, history, movement, travel, and kinetics