The Art of Eric Carle: The Birth of a Book and a Museum

April 3 - September 2, 2012
West Gallery

2012 marked two ten-year anniversaries for Eric Carle—the opening of the Museum and the publication of “Slowly, Slowly, Slowly,” said the Sloth. The Museum put art from the sloth book on view to mark these events. 

It was his involvement in the creation of the Museum that actually led him to create a book about a sloth. In 2000-2001, weeks and months of thinking, planning, meetings, and decision-making had him going at a hectic pace. Finally, he said, “Enough!” In his studio, with a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door, he decided to seek out something completely opposite from the frantic life he had been living. It was there he discovered the sloth. The slow pace of this animal’s existence sent a powerful message to Eric: we need to slow our lives down. 

He investigated the habitat of the sloth and learned about the animals that live around this lethargic creature. Through the process of creating mock-up books, or “dummies” as they are called, he continually revised the story. A small selection of these working drafts is on view, as well as several revisions of the actual art, some of his designs for the dust jacket, and a selection of earlier versions of some of the book’s pages.