Allison Cooke Brown ~ Maine


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Allison Cooke Brown: "My work ranges from small hand held book-like structures to larger scale sculpture. I create forms and apparel relating to women that may contain dichotomies both in material and subject matter.

"What interests me most is the domestic world, using materials like wire, clothing, or vintage linens; traditionally female activities such as sewing or knitting; and personal subject matter often relating to the puzzling and contradictory expectations of feminine behavior. Drawing from my experiences and perspectives as a middle-aged woman, I find this territory rich and many-layered."

   

Breast cancer related bookworks
Wearable books by Brown

 
   
Daddy's Girl: Little Miss Perfect
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2015. One-of-a-kind.

Box containing paper doll cutouts. Box: 8" x 5" x 1.5"; exterior constructed from book boards of "Daddy's Girl" by Mrs. L.T. Meade; base cloth-covered and designed as clamshell. Paper doll cutouts: 4 x 6.5"; 34 hinged leaves. Materials: used book boards; assorted papers.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Box made from vintage book containing a hinged row of 34 paper doll cutouts. The text on each doll are adjectives that describe a favored daughter. Reverse sides are printed copies of calico fabrics."
$700

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Woman in All Lands
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2015. One-of-a-kind.

10.25 x 6.5 x 2.25" clamshell box constructed with boards from "Woman in All Lands" by A. S. Meyrick. Accordion book laid in: 9 x 5.5" closed; 48 pages. Paper pages of text and lining pattern reproduced from original book. Materials: recycled book, paper, ribbon.

The pages selected from "Woman in All Lands" have to do with the clothing and physical aspect of the women from different countries of the world. Brown has an interest in the rules of behavior of women and girls through history. Much of the societal norms are reflected in the clothing they wear.
$875

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Hold
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2005. Edition of 6.

3.75 x 4 x 5.5" paste paper covered box ("Whitman's Sampler" design) holding 36 vintage glassine envelopes each containing a word hand cross stitched on cloth with red cotton thread. Each word is a definition of "hold". Cross stitched label on paper. Paper covered interior walls. Box construction by Scott Mullenberg.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Looking at the glassine envelopes holding my father's boxed collection of categorized postage stamps caused me to think about the many words that can mean 'containment'. I found 36 different definitions, cross stitched them in the old sampler style and put each in one of his envelopes. Each has its own distinct connotation to me or the reader, but combining two of them yields some surprising or disturbing results such as embrace/protect or believe/control."
$675

 


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Word Play
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2005. Edition of 8.

3.5 x 4.75 x 5.75" box containing 218 glassine envelopes, each holding a different verb laser printed in black (positive attributes) or red (negative attributes) upon paper. Box covered by bookcloth with paper covered walls inside. Collaged label of assorted papers. Bone closure. Box construction by Scott Mullenberg.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Inspired by boxes of my father's old categorized and organized postage stamps in their glassine envelopes, I've used his old envelopes to file 218 everyday things that I do, including some that I'm a little ashamed of. Although the words are personal, they can also be universal thoughts and actions. Picking up one or a combination of words will cause the reader to bring his own experiences to the word connections that can be thought provoking or humorous. The permutations are endless."
$675


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Allison Cooke Brown: “What interests me most is the domestic world, using materials like wire, clothing, or vintage linens; traditionally female activities such as sewing or knitting; and personal subject matter often relating to the puzzling and contradictory expectations of feminine behavior. Drawing from my experiences and perspectives as a middle-aged woman, I find this territory rich and many-layered.”
   

Cuff: Emily Dickinson
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2010. Edition of 2.

6.5 x 6.5 x.5"; looped gathered pages. Circular wrist structure with hinged sterling silver wire. Materials: handmade and commercial papers, muslin, pellon. Pearl button and cord closure.

Woman's cuff-like structure with a love poem by Emily Dickinson – "I cannot live with You" (No. 640) – digitally printed upon the paper pages, with interior pages printed with calico design.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Emily Dickinson was known to love dressing in calico, so I had to make the ruffles look like that. I know that later in life, she tended more toward white, however, and used white in her poems as well."
$550


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Cuff: Shakespeare
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2010. Edition of 2.

6.75 x 6.75 x.1.5"; 200 plus text pages. Circular wrist structure using hinged silver wire. Materials: Unryu paper, pellon, silk fabric. Cord and button closure.

Woman's cuff-like structure with over 200 (digitally) printed paper pages of Shakespearean quotations.

Allison Cooke Brown: "I had a lot of fun finding quotes that appealed to me, especially the humorous ones!"

The tartness of his face sours ripe grapes

$575


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Choker: Book of Etiquette
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2008. One-of-a-Kind.

9.25 x 9.5 x 1.5" gathered pages. Choker-style collar. Paper pages from a 1950s etiquette book. Strung upon a sterling silver wire. Sterling silver clasp and beads.

Another in Brown's wearable art series, this work again demonstrated her interest in the issues and legacies of being female. Her wearable art – cuffs, bracelets, chokers – uses paper and old books relating to what some consider female activities or expectations. This choker, delicately strung with silver wire and beads, appropriates pages from an etiquette book.

Delicate but stifling?
$575


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Collar: Strictures
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2008. One-of-a-Kind.

9 x 9.5 x 2"; 57 looped gathered pages. Collar style necklace with tulle and paper pages. 28 text pages laser printed. Strung onto sterling wire with sterling clasp and beads.

Allison Cooke Brown: "I collected these sayings from my friends, all of whom were brought up in the 50's."

You'll never get a husband that way
Don't kiss a boy until the third date
You need lipstick

$500

 


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Cuff: Sewing Lessons
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2008. Edition of 3.

5.5 x 6 x 1.5" gathered pages. Wrist-cuff structure. Laser printed paper pages. Hinged sterling silver wire with silk and pellon fabric. Hand-made button and cord closure.

Allison Cooke Brown: "I came across an old 1940's Singer Sewing Book that describes in great detail the many rules of sewing, both in the sewing itself as well as in the conduct for the woman who sews. On these pages are reproductions of specific excerpts that offer a glimpse into this domestic world. Separate inside pages have reproductions of the many sewing diagrams found throughout the book. "
$575 (Last copy)


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Allison Cooke Brown makes artists' books that reflect her own struggles with breast cancer.
 

Core Sample
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2003. Edition of 5.

5 x 4.25" closed; opens to 8.5" circle. Double star book with slipcase. Coptic binding book with Xerox lithography, hand and machine made papers, paste paper, and punched label.

Allison Cooke Brown: "I think that many of us have scars embedded inside us. I tried to imitate the scanning of a woman's body through her clothing, to the insides and then back out the other side. The book is meant to paginate fast, or to be displayed opened to 360 degrees, imitating a "core sample."
$450


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Spine
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2003. Edition of 2.

10.5 x 6 x 1.25" closed. Opens 360 degrees. Coptic binding. pages and hinges printed by Xerox lithography of a ribcage and artist's writings, all in red. Linen cover with typeset label.

Allison Cooke Brown is interested in investigating the territory of body and thought. Much of her work reflects her past struggles with breast cancer.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Aside from the pun of "spine" in a book format, I wanted to have my thoughts running along the surface of an interior of a torso. The book can be displayed open, 360 degrees to imitate the roundness of a body; but it also can be read as a narrative, since the writing can be read line by line, and which discusses questions of identity of who I am."
$525



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Allison Cooke Brown Out of Print Title:
• Cuff: Sugar and Spice
• Female Arts
   
A Book for Jennifer
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2013. one-of-a-kind.

5.5 x 8.25 x 1" box that contains a paper-doll chain book. Clamshell box made from the covers of a vintage book, A Book for Jennifer by Alice Dalgliesh (New York, Scribners, 1940) One full-page illustration and one page of text from A Book for Jennifer tipped on the interior lid top and bottom. Grosgrain ribbon tie closure. Paper doll chain: 4 x 7"; 30 leaves; accordion fold; text copied from original etiquette books onto heavy stock. Signed and numbered by the artist.

Allison Cooke-Brown: "A Book for Jennifer is an old story book that is made into a box which contains cut-paper dolls with excerpts from different etiquette books."
$725 (SOLD)

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Cuff: Surname
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2008. One-of-a-Kind.

6.5 x 6 x 1.5"; 77 pages. Text hand-stamped onto rice paper pages. Bound in organza and pellon with hinged sterling silver wire, bead and ribbon closure.

This cuff is built of paper pages on which in alphabetical order are hand-stamped terms, many of them derogatory, used to describe women, e.g., vamp and tramp. Interspersed are pages on firmer stock with blind-stamped terms that denote women's roles, e.g., mother, sister, and aunt. The juxtaposition is telling – and the point.
(SOLD)


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Sewing Lessons
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2013. One-of-a-kind.

3.25" x 5.75" x 1.25"; 74 leaves. Materials: silk, cotton, muslin, ribbon, needle, thread. Stab binding with paste paper and bookcloth cover. Excerpts from a 1949 Singer Sewing Book have been printed onto cloth pages. As if the book has been sewn together, a thread anchored to the back board runs through the middle of each page and out the middle of the front board. The thread ends in a sewing needle that is stuck into a fabric swatch that lies across the front board. Signed by the artist.

Allison Cooke Brown: "I came across an old 1940's Singer Sewing Book that describes in great detail the many rules of sewing, both in the sewing itself as well as in the conduct for the woman who sews. On these pages are reproductions of specific excerpts that offer a glimpse into this domestic world.

"When you turn the pages, the thread will 'sew.'"

(SOLD)

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Spotless
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2013. one-of-a-kind.

3.5 x 8 x 1"; 26 pages. White paper pages with embossed text, white on white. Stab binding with covers of white cotton gloves.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Basically, what I'm continuing to do is investigate the rules of behavior of women and girls. Spotless has its cover made of a pair of cotton gloves. It contains words stamped onto paper that relate to what is considered 'spotless behavior.' All in white of course."

Admirable, amiable, charming, chaste, …
(SOLD)

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"Teatime" Gloves
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2014. One-of-a-kind.

5 x 9 "; 18 pages. Materials: teabags, thread, paper, silk ribbon. Signed by the artist.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Book with 18 pages made from teabags. Bags are sewn together in a glove shape, and have my journal excerpts written on them. "

Brown has a daily ritual of having a cup of tea and writing in her journal. She has produced several books combining the jotting from her journal and the recycled tea bags.
(SOLD)

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A Young Lady's Practice Book
By Allison Cooke Brown
Yarmouth, Maine: Allison Cooke Brown, 2015. One-of-a-kind.

7" x 5" x 1.25"; 30 leaves. Accordion structure extending from the base pastedown. Materials: paper, bookcloth, silk ribbon. Paper doll cutouts: 3.25 x 6.25"; 25 hinged leaves. Bound in cloth-covered wraparound with ribbon tie closure. Signed and numbered by the artist.

Allison Cooke Brown: "Book containing hinged row of paper dolls. Text on the dolls are alphabetically arranged with adjectives written in penmanship style that describe what is considered a 'good girl.' (Practice makes perfect.) Back sides are printed with copies of calico fabric."
(SOLD)

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Page last update: 01.23.16

 

   
  
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