Obituary Note: Alice Provensen

Alice Provensen, "an award-winning artist who illustrated dozens of popular books for children, often in collaboration with her husband," died April 23, the Washington Post reported. She was 99. Provensen worked for 40 years with her husband, Martin, illustrating works like The Color Kittens by Margaret Wise Brown, The Fuzzy Duckling, Katie the Kitten and adaptations of classic literature. The Provensens also collaborated on The Iliad and the Odyssey (1956), and their Caldecott Medal-winning 1983 book The Glorious Flight.

"Some of their books sold millions of copies," children's book historian Leonard S. Marcus said. "There was a kind of lightness and open space in their work. You could project your own imagination into their world."

Many of their early titles were published in the Golden Books series, and "the single most familiar image to emerge from their studio" may have been Tony the Tiger, the advertising symbol of Kellogg's Frosted Flakes, the Post wrote, adding that "working at back-to-back drawing boards in a converted barn, the Provensens turned out books based on Aesop's Fables, Mother Goose stories, Bible tales, Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses, Tennyson's "The Charge of the Light Brigade" and plays of Shakespeare.... They also produced tales about animals of every description, including several volumes set at Maple Hill Farm, their longtime home in upstate New York."

After her husband died in 1987, Alice Provensen embarked on her first solo project, an illustrated history of the presidents, The Buck Stops Here (1990). Her other books include Punch in New York (1991) and A Day in the Life of Murphy (2003).

Powered by: Xtenit