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Mary Ellen Long, "Writing the Pages", mud, sand, paper, stones and indigenous plants, The Land: An Art Site, Mountainaire, NM, 1999


Mary Ellen Long, \   Forest Rooms
Mary Ellen Long, \   Book Art

Mary Ellen Long

To Mary Ellen Long, the forest outside her Colorado home is her library, a place to gain knowledge of the world and catch up with the latest news. She presents the results of her research to the world through symbolic volumes made from natural materials and by careful documentation of her reverent woodland installations.

"I find strength and message in these natural objects and sites in this mountain environment. My sculptural interventions using the indigenous and handmade paper create forms that speak of the slow process of nature - of growth, of decay and rebirth on the land, and of our interconnectedness to this integrity."

Long's earth books contain stories written in the language of stones, moss, earth, and leaves as well as the unpredictable scribblings and blots of decay generated when she buries these "books" under winter snows. She also creates site-specific environments and meditation spaces in the wild using pine cones, plants and stones cleared from trails. Using the same papery mulch used in her book projects, Long may ring the occasional stand of tree trunks with fiber pulp to temporarily highlight "their form and spirit".

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