Elizabeth Briel, Travel Artist

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Traveling Bookshelf in Sicily

Movana Chen just completed a 2-week residency at Studio Sicilia, and was working on her Traveling to Your Bookshelf Project. She's been knitting my paper book manuscript into part of a giant scarf she's been making for years, made of books.

She writes:

"My project is to tie a knot between everyone in connecting the lives of different people and allowing them to communicate across nations and cultures,"

at the studio

Movana and her scarf outside the studio

"everything [in Cianciana is] very slow, life, working style…wait for more than one hour in the post office to buy the stamp. [the post office] run out of stamps, went there again the second day, wait for another hour."

the giant paper scarf

Movana's paper scarf by the front door (takes on a life of its own)

"enjoy knitting in your studio, almost everything in blue,"

scarf on the bed under skylight

scarf in bedroom


"just the first two nights no electricity power, weather horrible, now back to normal, nice to meeting your friends, Hilary, David, Sav,"

studio by candlelight – Hilary and David had Movana stay in their exra house and helped get the electrics back on

knitting by candlelight

knitting by sculpture in the centro storico of Cianciana:

knitting by sculpture

"people in the town looking me very strange, but all very helpful and nice"

drawing a crowd:

paolo movana and crowd

"yesterday knitting with Sav's mother, all are very friendly,"


"It is simple [to knit], anyone who's interested can experience knitting with Elizabeth's writing paper in my ongoing piece. Most of the participants in my project had no experience in knitting, so all are just first time, men, women, kids. The best participant is a Korean guy, now he knits very well."

knitting over a Sicilian lunch

knitting supplies

the scarf goes to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Agrigento for a day trip:

scarf and Greek temple in Agrigento

"good very easy to get to Cianciana from Palermo, the transport very good service, always on time,"

Movana makes postcards from every stop on the Traveling to your Bookshelf tour:

postcards by doors

Her next project: a body container made of friends' maps from their travels.

Photo from an interview with Paolo Sanzeri:

paolo movana and map body container 2

Movana's video of her experiences in Cianciana is here. And look for her artwork at the Hong Kong Art Fair's Galerie Pekin booth, coming up later this month.


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