“Moonlit Nights & Other Illustrations”

The Chrysler Museum displays a new exhibit by Eric Carle, the Illustrator behind “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”

The vibrant children’s books you know and love have come to life at the Chrysler Museum in Eric Carle’s traveling exhibit, “Moonlit Nights & Other Illustrations.” 

Eric Carle, who celebrated his 90th birthday over the summer season, is famous for his stories of insects and animals created out of multicolored collages of tissue paper applied to a simple white or daytime background. 

You may know him from his 1969 iconic release, “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” which has sold more than 41 million copies to date and has been translated into more than 62 languages. To this day, it’s a bestseller on Amazon and a favorite among families. 

A few illustrations from his children’s books are presented in the exhibit as well among other great works of art he has created since. 

While walking through, the true essence of Carle’s exhibit is constant throughout. The exhibit showcases illustrations with nighttime backdrops mixed with blues and purples. The dreamy nighttime scenes reveal short stories about twinkling stars, blinking fireflies and the gleaming moon above us. 

The use of bright objects also reveal a glowing mood; each piece of art creates a certain warmth of brightness among the dim environment. 

In addition to that, as a viewer, I can notice that Carles delicately uses adjectives to his advantage in order to have a constant on-going discussion when captioning each work of art. The adjectives give light to how we should pay attention to detail when among friends, animals and the natural world that surrounds us. 

For instance, “The Grouchy Ladybug” and “The Very Lonely Firefly” combat the extreme emotions every living thing experience. 

No matter one’s age, it’s clear every piece Carle has made can be enjoyed and understood by adults and children alike. The museum provides an interactive space filled with games, puppets, costumes and Carle’s books, which helped the exhibit overall feel very inviting. 

If you would like to experience Carle’s illustrations yourself, the Chrysler Museum will display the exhibit until September 8th.

~Ashley McMillan, A&E Editor~

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