According to Umberto Eco the idea of the open work (opera operta) serves to explain the apparent radical difference between modern and traditional art. The open work represents through its
formal properties an epistemological difference in the whole experience of the world. It reflects the relativity, subjectivity
and discontinuity of the modern world. The concept of “openness” — the artist’s decision to leave arrangements of some constituents
of the work to the addressee — anticipates major themes of contemporary literary theory such as the multiplicity of interpretations
and the literary response as an interactive interplay between reader and text. With references to works of some great illustrators
of children’s books such as M. Ocelot and J. Piéncowski, masters of dramatic silhouettes, and analysing their innovative and
even aleatory techniques, we explore a set of theoretical issues such as the reception of suggestiveness/openness of a text,
the meaning of blankness and the aesthetic of silence in children’s books’ illustration.