Cloth Lullaby:The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois

Amy Novesky, Isabelle Arsenault

Cloth Lullaby:The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois
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Cloth Lullaby:The Woven Life of Louise Bourgeois

Amy Novesky, Isabelle Arsenault

Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) was a world-renowned modern artist noted for her sculptures made of wood, steel, stone, and cast rubber. Her most famous spider sculpture, Maman, stands more than 30 feet high. Just as spiders spin and repair their webs, Louise’s own mother was a weaver of tapestries. Louise spent her childhood in France as an apprentice to her mother before she became a tapestry artist herself. She worked with fabric throughout her career, and this biographical picture book shows how Bourgeois’s childhood experiences weaving with her loving, nurturing mother provided the inspiration for her most famous works.

With a beautifully nuanced and poetic story, this book stunningly captures the relationship between mother and daughter and illuminates how memories are woven into us all.


Every now and then a picture book comes along that is perfect in every way, such as Cloth Lullaby. The words illuminate a story with beautiful prose around which the pictures merge seamlessly.

Louise Bourgeois was a renowned artist whose sculptures and artworks were influenced by her family’s creativity and her unbreakable bond with her mother. Nature inspired her, as did her childhood and as she said: ‘My childhood has never lost its magic, it has never lost its mystery …’ The patterns and colours Isabelle Arsenault uses build a sensual, poignant narrative about a memorable and inspirational woman who lived a long and creative life. I urge you to experience the beauty and the lyricism of this extraordinary book. For ages 4 and up.

Alexa Dretzke is a Children’s & YA Book Specialist at Readings Hawthorn.

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