Kate Cheney Chappell 83 Center for Book Arts

Cynthia Motian McGuirl

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Cynthia Motian McGuirl

Cynthia Motian McGuirl works with fiber, metal and paper utilizing the techniques of stitching, hammering and bookbinding. She has discovered a back and forth repertoire between creating narrative images and creating objects. She believes that there is a meditation that happens in the rhythmic 'craft' work that helps the 'art' work to evolve. In her practice, craft and art are intertwined and of equal importance.

Motian McGuirl works in an intuitive way when creating books. One image or word leads to another and when she feels it has come together completely, the book is done. Motian McGuirl hopes people find the narrative informative and entertaining but also that it inspires them to think about their own stories.

Motian McGuirl attended Swain School of Design and Kansas City Art Institute. She moved to Maine in 1982 and pursued a career as a functional hand weaver. A series of intense dreams about her ancestors (Armenian Genocide survivors) led her to seek a more narrative mode of expression which manifested as Printmaking and Art Books.

Recent exhibits include Narrative & Structure online at the Camden Public Library, ME, Anthology: Books and Art at the Merryspring Arts Center in Bowdoinham, ME, When Will We Ever Learn at the Yvette Torres Gallery in Rockland, ME, Lies, Truths & Mysteries at the NoRo Gallery in Rockland, ME, and People On the Move: A Human Crisis at the Jonathan Frost Gallery in Rockland, ME. She was a Visiting Artist at the Print Studio of the University of Maine at Orono in 2017. Her piece Old Maid was recently featured in the Union of Maine Visual Artists Journal. She teaches book arts and marbling at various locations and at her studio in Thomaston, ME.

Artist Book by Cynthia McGuirl