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Jane Mount and the Ideal Bookshelf

June 4, 2010 | by


What is on an ideal bookshelf?

The books that made people who they are, that changed their lives.

How long have you been painting bookshelves?

Three years.

Do you ever spot repeats?

There’s a cookbook called The Silver Spoon—I’ve painted that silver spoon so many times! A Confederacy of Dunces, Catcher in the Rye, The Little Prince, the Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, A Wrinkle in Time, Bird by Bird.

Do you ever find new reading while on the job?

Totally. I just bought I Married Adventure by Osa Johnson. A friend had an early edition on his bookshelf, and it had this really cool black-and-white tiger-striped spine. I looked it up, and Johnson sounded fascinating. I don’t know if I would have picked it up if the spine hadn’t had the stripes!

Jane Mount is an artist and entrepreneur. An exhibit of her Ideal Bookshelf project is on display at the Curiosity Shoppe in San Francisco until June 13.




  1. Lisa Guidarini | June 4, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    I have one of her paintings! Love them. Some of her stuff is on, too. That wasn’t mentioned in this interview.

  2. Charles Wyrick | June 4, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    We have one of her paintings too! Jane is an amazing artist. I didn’t know about her “Bookshelf” project until now. So cool.

  3. onedrunkboy | June 4, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    these are brilliant, love the confederacy of dunces

  4. Don Share | June 4, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    Osa and spouse play a role in a famous poem by Elizabeth Bishop, check it out!

  5. stormbirdd | June 4, 2010 at 11:12 pm

    An artist pulls out the extraordinary from an ordinary thing. The colors, the vertical shapes of the books on a white background: these are wonderful (and yes, we own two prints ourselves).

    Thank you, Jane!

  6. Steven Augustine | June 5, 2010 at 2:47 am

    Your next theme should be medicine cabinets.

  7. Rebecca | June 6, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    I don’t quite get it, who’s bookshelves are these? What is the angle??? Is there meant to be a point or are they just pretty? They are quite pretty.

  8. Charlotte K | September 12, 2010 at 11:56 am

    Tiger stripes? Zebra stripes, I think (“I Married Adventure”)

    One of my favorite books of late childhood, and still gracing my bookshelves 40 years later

  9. belly fat | November 11, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    That was a really amazing writing!!!

  10. Don Bodenbach | March 5, 2015 at 1:51 am

    I’m a bookworm, actually I love organizing my bookshelf. I can say that your bookshelf is truly an ideal one.

1 Pingbacks

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by design:related, Lauren Cerand, 20×200, Shannon, redchuck and others. redchuck said: Cool! Q&A: .@janemount and the Ideal Bookshelf: Jane painted a wonderful portrait of Lucky 4 us. […]

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