Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Current Desktop, Jane Mount

New year, new desktop! This time, featuring one of the shelves from the Ideal Bookshelf series by Jane Mount. The painting I chose is her children's literature bookshelf, which has titles like Winnie The Pooh, Pat the Bunny, Goodnight, Moon, and The Little Prince.

What Jane has to say about it:

For a while, I've been documenting people's bookshelves as a form of portraiture; you can actually learn a lot about folks by their books' covers. Now, I'm working on a series of "ideal" bookshelves: sets of favorites—mine or someone else's—amalgamated in a picture, even if they don't usually live on shelves anywhere near each other.

First off, Jane Mount's Ideal Bookshelves are fantastic; I love each piece and want to hug the paintings. Second, the series really speaks to me on several levels, but mostly this one: As obsessive as I am about organization, my personal bookshelves would probably appear unusually disorganized, but there is a system.

(In California, we had a fantastic wall of bookshelves. As Librarian, I used to task my siblings with cleaning up the shelves about once a month. By publisher, and then alphabetical by author, and then by book order if it came in a series. There was no alphabetizing of titles.)

My own personal bookshelf (as opposed to the family one) holds all the books that are, well, near and dear to my heart, for various reasons. My bookshelves are designed as 12 cubbyholes, and the space breaks down like this:

1 shelf - reference books (Webster's, AP Style Guide, Scholastic Rhyming Dictionary etc.)
1 shelf - mysteries/suspenses/thrillers
1 shelf - photo albums
1 shelf - academic (a couple test prep books, but mostly books assigned for a class that I really enjoyed - Heart of Darkness is not on this shelf, or anywhere near my room, it was banished to the second floor bookshelf over the fax machine)
2 shelves - books people give me
2 shelves - sentimental books (Great Expectations, Edward Eager's Tales Of Magic series, The Puppy Who Wanted A Boy, The Bronze Horseman, Les Misérables, The Rainmaker.

And the remaining four cubbyholes keep documents and miscellaneous things (like my collection of restaurant business cards). On a semi-related note, I'm not a fan of bookends (even though these adorable pillow bookends by Djenya are awesome, I would never buy them for actual use) because they seem so precarious to me. Slotting a new book in between bookends is always this really treacherous feat where an entire line of books threatens to explode out of the orderly line. Okay, maybe I've just never used bookends properly, or I cram too many books between them. But I like my straightforward and plain cubbyholes.


  1. [...] project began in 1993, and yes, it runs along similar lines as Jane Mount’s Ideal Bookshelves series. I have no idea when Jane Mount began her project (I think after). Sorted Books focuses primarily [...]

  2. Woooow, so cool! I really want one done... but I'd probably give myself a headache trying to pick which books to put in. But that's just amazing!