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Mary J Bole

Cleveland, OH


Sculpture, book-works and drawings by Mary J Bole often utilize materials of geologic origin: shaped by her lineage of Victorian leftover culture experienced through her equally decaying hometown of Cleveland (OH). Her projects can involve intensive historical research. Currently she is working on a collaborative installation at the Lloyd Library in Cincinnati titled Wounded Home. A solo exhibition titledTombs and Toilets is scheduled January through March 2014 at Mount Saint Mary's College in Los Angeles (CA). Recently completed book-works projects are Toilet Worship (Logan Elm Press 2012 [OH]) and Combing Columbus (Finding Time: Columbus Public Art 2012). Her 2012 installation at the Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site in Philadelphia titled Purge Incomplete, centered on the prison's early plumbing. It was supported by artist residencies at The Kohler Factory (WI) and Pilchuck (WA). Recent catalogues featuring Bole's work include "Finding Time: Public Art 2012″; "Of Other Spaces" curated by James Voorhies, Bureau For Open Culture at Columbus College of Art and Design; and Bole's 2005 solo exhibition "Dear Little Twist of Fate" at the Aronoff Center Weston Art Gallery, Cincinnati (OH). The Greater Columbus Arts Council recently published a set of catalogues by artists who were recipients of the Dresden Germany Exchange and Bole is part of the set. She has exhibited work in the United States, Russia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Sweden, England and Germany. She has lectured extensively about her work and the numerous artists' residencies she has attended and self-organized. These include The Ohio Art Council's sponsored Headlands Art Center residency (CA), Women's Studio Workshop (NY), Belden Brick Factory (OH), Dedouch Monument Plaque Company (IL) and KVO Enamel on Steel (CA). She had previously created five artists book editions at Knust Press (part of Extrapool, The Netherlands), and she has written for journals such as "Morbid Curiosity" and "Death's Garden". She has received numerous grants including six Ohio Arts Council grants, Andy Warhol Foundation Grant (through Women's Studio Workshop, NY), two Greater Columbus Arts Council Grants, the Coca-Cola Grant (through The Ohio State University Women's Studies Dept.) and an NEA grant through Randolph Street Gallery, Chicago (IL).

I am a collector, a categorizer, and a seeker of the extraordinary, all of which create the strata in my work which includes sculpture, drawing and handmade artists books.

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