A visit to Washington, DC’s National Portrait Gallery forever alters Parker Curry’s young life when she views First Lady Michelle Obama’s portrait.
When Parker Curry came face-to-face with Amy Sherald’s transcendent portrait of First Lady Michelle Obama at the National Portrait Gallery, she didn’t just see the First Lady of the United States. She saw a queen—one with dynamic self-assurance, regality, beauty, and truth who captured this young girl’s imagination. When a nearby museum-goer snapped a photo of a mesmerized Parker, it became an internet sensation. Inspired by this visit, Parker, and her mother, Jessica Curry, tell the story of a young girl and her family, whose trip to a museum becomes an extraordinary moment, in a moving picture book.
Parker Looks Up follows Parker, along with her baby sister and her mother, and her best friend Gia and Gia’s mother, as they walk the halls of a museum, seeing paintings of everyone and everything from George Washington Carver to Frida Kahlo, exotic flowers to graceful ballerinas. Then, Parker walks by Sherald’s portrait of Michelle Obama…and almost passes it. But she stops...and looks up!
Parker saw the possibility and promise, the hopes and dreams of herself in this powerful painting of Michelle Obama. An everyday moment became an extraordinary one…that continues to resonate its power, inspiration, and indelible impact. Because, as Jessica Curry said, “anything is possible regardless of race, class, or gender.”
Parker Curry, six years old, is a New York Times bestselling author and dynamic young mind with a love for ballet and reading. Currently, Parker is in first grade, where she loves to explore art and new books. Precocious Parker lives with her mother, father, younger sister, and baby brother.
Jessica Curry is a New York Times bestselling author, blogger, and work-at-home mama to three children Parker, Ava, and Cash. Jessica’s debut children’s picture book, written with her oldest daughter, Parker, was nominated for a 2020 NAACP Image Award. The mother-daughter duo have since penned four additional children’s books in hopes of inspiring others to dream big dreams. Jessica’s blog, Happy Mama Happy Babies, is an authentic motherhood and lifestyle platform that shares her family’s adventures, growth chronicles, and everything in between. Jessica and her family reside in Sherman Oaks, California.
Brittany Jackson (Bea for short) is a New York Times bestselling illustrator who attended the College for Creative Studies and is the grand prize winner and returned alumni of L. Ron Hubbard’s Illustrator of the Future Award of 2007. Bea has worked in freelance as a character and outfit designer for various social networking and gaming platforms for more than eight years, though she is most publicly known in publishing as an illustrator.