Inland Northwest History Moment: Petland


 

Artist Kathryn Glowen paid tender tribute to her friend Mamie Rand in a series of artworks that explore memory and time -- and celebrate Mamie Rand’s 101-year life of simplicity in Spokane, as a pet store owner, amateur musician and accountant. Mamie Rand nurtured all types of living creatures, from goats to cats to lizards. She even lined old kitchen strainers with flannel to serve as nests for tiny songbirds’ eggs.

Drawing from thousands of objects that Rand had accumulated in her home - from christening gowns and work dresses, to butterfly collections and business records, to kitchen utensils and drinking glasses – Glowen wove numerous artworks and toured them as an exhibit called Petland, named for the pet store that Rand had operated for 30 years.

Mamie Rand’s story and Kathryn Glowen’s artwork are preserved together in the MAC Collection. Hundreds of papers and photographs document Rand’s business records as well as her views on religion, music, sewing, travel, animals, and women’s issues, primarily during the 1920s through 1950s. Two of Glowen’s assemblages, Baby Bird Bassinet and For Life tell the women’s stories in yet another way. 
 
The Inland Northwest History Moment is a collaboration of Spokane Public Radio and the Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture (MAC), in celebration of 100 Stories, the museum’s centennial exhibition. www.northwestmuseum.org
 
 
More Resources:
Glowen exhibit catalog, http://deborahjhaynes.com/images/uploads/pdfs/Petland.pdf
Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture: Archives Collection MS 208, Mamie Rand Papers
 
 
Image captions:
Mamie Rand lined old kitchen strainers with flannel to serve as nests for tiny songbirds’ eggs. Baby Bird Bassinet, 1995-1997 by Kathryn Glowen. Museum Collection 4151.2
                                                                                               
A brass bed is surrounded by corn and a circle of pillows made from bags of feed corn, with photographs of Mamie's early life copied and sewn to each. The assemblage speaks of renewal, everlasting life and the passage of time.  For Life, 1997 by Kathryn Glowen. Museum Collection 4151.1.  
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