The BravinLee artist's book program is very pleased to present a selection of books from an ongoing series of hand-painted and embroidered books by Elena Berriolo. Each book is inspired by a piece of music from composers such as Erik Satie and Philip Glass. Berriolo listens repeatedly to a short passage of the music while producing the sixteen pages of each volume. In addition to the selection of the books presented in the Gallery's vitrine, Berriolo also made a series of 50 unique books consisting of 8 embroidered and painted pages that act as a deluxe catalogue for the show and will be mailed to 50 fortunate recipients. These books may function as invitations to the show and at the same time they are very much part of the show itself.
About the books Berriolo states:
"By perforating and threading a page with a sewing machine I produce a sign simultaneously on the two sides of the page. While working with the machine on the front of the page, I don't have access to the back of it. I can only imagine the result of my work. I name the front page "my present" and the back, not visible yet, "my future." After taking the book off the sewing machine, I am able to turn the page and have access to my previous "my future": now I can name it "my present," since I have full access to it.The previous "my present" page is now out of sight and since I remember it, I name it "my past." This process gets repeated through the 16 pages of the book and allows me to work within space and time,each gesture in my "present now" interfering with the "future now" as happens to all of us in real life."
During the opening Berriolo will create a 15-minute performance using and moving her sewing machine along the corridor outside the gallery, forming a long book out of cards carrying on one side the title of the show ("In a book, a page is one side of a two sided sheet of paper") and printed solid green on the other side. Visitors will be asked to cut the pages/cards of the book with a pair of scissors, essentially unmaking the book while she is making it.
Berriolo has also produced a limited edition tee-shirt. The front reads "every time I turn the page" and the back "the previous page passes into my past," which describes her artistic process. The tee-shirts and more information about her work are available at elenaberriolo.com
Berriolo's books have been included in the following exhibitions:
2011 -"Au Plaisir Du Livre," Librairie Auguste Blizot, Paris, 2011- "One of a Kind Books," Pierre Menard Gallery, Cambridge, MA, 2009 – "Global Books," Cité du Livre, Aix en Provence, France, 2003 –"Wandering Library" Markers IV in Venice, 1997 – "La Tentation du Livre," Espace Culturel de Tinnqueux, France, 1994 – "Di Carta ed Altro," Museo Pecci Prato, Italy, 1988 -"Libri d'Artista," Galleria Cavellini, Brescia, Italy.
Her non-book work has been shown widely. A large-scale painting on fabric is on view in "Turbolenze" at Museo Pecci, Milan, March 9th -April 14th, 2012.