Guelph artist Barbara Salsberg Mathews has created a beautifully illustrated children's comic book called Kid COVID Fights Back! to help kids and a local non-profit in these challenging times.
The book shows children how Kid COVID fights off the coronavirus using a variety of tactics including super speed cleaning and 20-second hand-washing moves. The Kid has a special Hockey Stick suit, designed to keep others a safe distance away, and always carries extra toilet paper to give to those in need. Kid COVID has super staying-at-home powers enjoying everything from baking bread to making masks from socks.
"Artists need support more than ever in these challenging times, and Guelph Arts Council is working to help. We're grateful to Barbara for supporting our work through her amazing storytelling and illustration skills, and her volunteer service on GAC's Board."
Patti Broughton, Executive Director, Guelph Arts Council
"Mathews' book, with its imaginative illustrations and easy to follow text, is the perfect remedy for kids' anxiety and confusion during the COVID-19 pandemic. Not only does Kid COVID Fights Back! offer useful information about the virus itself, it acts as a gentle reminder that children indeed have the power to take control by washing their hands, physical distancing and having fun at home with the people they love. "
Kira Vermond, Guelph-based award-winning children's author and journalist
BARBARA SALSBERG MATHEWS has been creating art since she was a child. While in her teens, she wrote and illustrated 2 children's books, published by Annick Press. She also studied mime in Paris, France in 1979. Barbara graduated with honours from the Ontario College of Art (1981), completed a B.A in Fine Arts at the University of Guelph (1982) and a B.Ed. at the University of Toronto. She earned her M.Ed. from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, and taught arts in high schools for over 25 years. She is also the proud parent of two adult children.
Barbara has undertaken numerous private commissions, and has exhibited her work in several Toronto shows and in Guelph. Her work can also be seen at Toronto's Baycrest Hospital and Princess Margaret Lodge. Using acrylics, she particularly enjoys capturing the story and mood in local landscapes.
Barbara has received a number of grants and awards for her work, including: Canada Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and Ontario Society of Artists. Since retiring as Head of Visual Art from Toronto District School Board's Northern Secondary School, Barbara now lives with her husband in Guelph where she continues to paint and illustrate.