Summer weeding, library style

Hi campers! Now that the students have finished class (and I’m so lonely in the library!) it is time for fun summer projects. “Fun” is a relative term in this instance, but I do love discovering weird gems in the collection. Here’s a stack of books (on the counter behind me) that are going out to pasture in storage. As you can see in the stacks behind, this didn’t make much of a dent. IMG_0877

And here are a couple of my favorites. This commentary is inspired by one of my favorite blogs,, which, if you haven’t looked at, do!

Audio Arts: SO contemporary, as the title implies! This one is hot off the presses, as you can see. I wonder if any of our students have used or remember the media pictured below. Despite the amazing aesthetic you can observe here, it is full of interviews with actually interesting artists, so even though it hasn’t circ’ed in a few years, I’m keeping this little friend, but it’s going out to storage.


Here’s a couple pictures from a very scary book about collecting crafts. This chapter was about “what to do when you bring your art home”, as if I would have this in my house! The nightmares it would cause me and my children…

Okay, this book wins the award for the least-savory cover picture. It just grosses me out, I’m sorry to be so immature. I guess it’s the hairy arms coupled with the color of the clay. This is not the same medium as Patrick and Demi worked with in Ghost.


Now for a book that is staying in my main collection because it’s amazing. It’s called Portables, and is all about, well, portable things.  Here’s a picture of the cover and an example page below. Don’t miss the protective covering in the far right corner for “a walk in the park”. So awesome.



And, for the truly courageous among us, Weave Your Own Tweed! Yes sir, let those shuttles fly! Something about that image of the man behind the loom makes it look like he’s travelling through time, and indeed, perhaps he is!


And finally, what collection would be complete without An Encyclopedia of Sofas? Dibs on the pair that look like boxing gloves, they would look tremendous in my living room.


That’s all for now, but the weeding has just begun, stay tuned for more treasures from the library!


A Fond Farewell

Today is my last shift as a work-study librarian. It’s an absolutely perfect day- outside the sky is vibrant blue, the sun lighting up the grass and leaves of the blackberry bushes electric green. From where I sit at my familiar post, the world outside looks so bright, the broad windows at the front of the library could be a collection of oddly-shaped, oversized televisions.

Bright like my future. So bright I’ve got to wear shades. I find myself smiling at the times Dylan Beck has teased me for wearing my sunglasses indoors while working on one failed attempt at ceramics after another, eyes bloodshot from staying up late and getting up early.

I’m going to miss this job dearly. What more could a weird, quiet person want? Roaming the storage collection, picking up odd titles and musing over random morsels of information. Singing Cole Porter while reshelving books when no one was around. Though the hours I’ve spent here may be few compared to those I spent in the studio, I find that they’ve been some of my favorite.

So to celebrate these cherished hours, I’ve compiled all of the (long overdue) books from around my reading chair (the outdated light blue velveteen wingback in my studio where I’ve spent so much time this year thinking, reading, napping…) to bring you a reading list of what’s been inspiring me as I’ve pondered my thesis, madness, and music. It’s called MADNESS! and it’ll be available for checkout soon, and it’s a pretty decent read, if I do say so myself. Anyway, without further ado…

The Official Mary J Wilson Thesis Year Library List


Luis Bunuel’s L’Age D’Or

Visual Acoustics The Modernism of Julius Shulman


The Devil’s Cloth by Michel Pastoureau

The Architecture of Happiness by Alain de Botton

Crow Planet: Essential Wisdom from the Urban Wilderness by Lyanda Lynn Haupt

Bad Girls and Sick Boys by Linda S. Kauffman

Pilgrimage by Stuart Kestenbaum

The Acme Novelty Date Book 1986-1995

Weirdo Noir: Gothic and Dark Lowbrow Art by Matt Dukes Jordan

Czech Cubism: Architecture Furniture Decorative Arts by Alexander von Vegesack

The Liberated Page

Paper Graphics

The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock & Roll

Puppets, Pawns, and Prophets

In Wonderland: The Surrealism Adventures of Women Artists in Mexico and The United States

William Blake: Poet Printer Prophet

American Watercolor