Mary V. Marsh was born in Portland, Oregon and has been making art and working in libraries in the Bay Area since 1982. She received an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1992. She has exhibited in many venues in the Bay Area with solo shows at, San Francisco Art Commission at Grove Street, San Jose Museum of Art, Berkeley Art Center, and San Francisco Public Library, Skylight Gallery. She makes unique and small edition artist books under Quite Contrary Press and exhibits at Mercury 20 Gallery.
Collecting and reassembling discarded library books and cards, I think about how they have been read and transformed by time into historical remnants. Books and cards discarded from a community library imply a shared history of people reading the same books. Combining the ‘found’ phrases of the book titles to form poems, I use the cards as pages and tape or sew them into unique artist books. Images made with gouache, coffee and block prints intersect with the words to create a narrative. Rereading history, consumer culture, the future of books and reading, are some of the ideas explored.