A R T I S T      B O O K S 

The one-of-a-kind bookwork of Maryjean Viano Crowe is influenced by her time spent in Paris in January for over nine years teaching for Rhode Island School of Design. No studio space and modest living quarters dictated that she reduce the size of her work.  The artist’s book format offered a perfect solution.  Often packed with evidence of Paris days and detritus scavenged from the flea markets of Porte de Vanves and Porte de Montreuil, her dense, diminutive books are like lost journals, tattered, torn, alluding to memories and experiences from the past. 

Layered with images and transparencies, veiled pages reveal and conceal the invented lives beneath them.  Along with the images text floats iconically, illuminating voices that are cobbled together from actual love letters and all things imagined, and where symbol and metaphor abound.  Examples such as “The Letter” and “Camouflage”, and works like “Witness” and “Book of Magic Numbers & Letters” explore the space between reality, daydreaming, and longing. 

Mysterious and complex, Maryjean, Viano Crowe’s non-linear, poetic works evoke the intensity and drama of an overcast winter day in Paris, France, or perhaps one in Paris, Maine.