Arts newsletter for September

Will October see spring trully blossom? Let’s hope so and look forward lounging outside in the sun with a good book. Speaking of which, grab a few books from our Arts enewsletter’s selection this month, you won’t be disappointed!

Library News


The impossible museum, and other intriguing new art books for September 2012:

Syndetics book coverArt of the Andes : from Chavín to Inca / Rebecca Stone.
“This wide-ranging survey has established itself as the best single volume introduction to Andean art and architecture, and is an essential guide to pre-Columbian Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia for the general reader, student, traveler, and artist alike. Describing the strikingly varied artistic achievements of the Chavín, Paracas, Moche, Nasca, Chimu, and Inca cultures, among others, Rebecca Stone has rewritten and expanded the text throughout, touching on many of the recent discoveries and advances in the field…” (adapted from description)

Syndetics book coverThe early Dürer / [Albrecht Dürer] ; edited by Daniel Hess and Thomas Eser ; [translations: Lance Anderson … [et al.]].
“Painter, engraver, designer of woodcuts, and major art theorist, Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) is Germany’s most famous artist. This new study, published in association with the Germanisches Nationalmuseum in Nuremberg, focuses on his early art and the circumstances of the young painter’s life that enabled his unique work. Dürer is resituated in the artistic context of his time, at an exciting crossroad between the imitation of traditional painting and the selfconscious renewal of his profession…”
(adapted from description)

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This month’s selection of new craft books offers inspiring ideas and handy techniques to help you get started. Celebrate the change of season by experimenting with creative jewellery designs and knitting projects such as seamless sweaters and easy hand knits for your baby. And, if you are looking for something different, check out for the charming doorstops that can bring character to your home. Enjoy the challenge!

Syndetics book coverA girl’s best friends : creative jewelry design / [edited by Robert Klanten, Sven Ehmann ; text and preface by Alisa Anh Kotmair].
“Today, jewellery –whether glamorous, gothic, or minimalist–is en vogue. Jewellery goes back centuries and has been on the forefront of design many times throughout history. Now, thanks to a burst of innovative concepts, materials, and designers, a new age of contemporary jewellery has begun. Girl’s Best Friends is an eclectic collection of work from around the world that documents this current development. Today, j jewellery exists in a wide spectrum of forms from traditional to modern, from geometric to organic. It is inspired by elements of folklore and the composition of collage. The materials used include gold, silver, and gemstones as well as plastics, porcelain, leather, wood, feathers, and hair. These are being used to create not only necklaces, rings, bracelets, earrings, and brooches, but also more experimental forms of decoration that expand the human body. Girl’s Best Friends is the most comprehensive showcase of the innovative jewellery being created today.” (Abridged summary from

Syndetics book coverSuper-cute doorstops : 35 charming doorstops that bring character to any room / Emma Hardy.
“Decorate your home with 35 colourful and quirky doorstops. Every home has a door that needs propping open, so why not create one of these fun and attractive doorstops to do the job? With ideas for animals, dolls, flowers, cars and decorative cubes, you will be sure to find the perfect design to suit all the rooms in your home. Why not stitch an adorable dog doorstop to keep watch by your front door, or make a pretty miniature garden with felt flowers to hold open the patio doors and let the cool breeze in? The retro rag rug draft excluder will keep you cosy on cold winter nights, while the apple and pear made from tweed would be the perfect kitchen doorstop. The projects use a variety of different materials and sewing techniques, and all come with clear step-by-step instructions and artworks. There are simple ideas that even kids could try – a little girl would love to make the simple doll with cute embroidered face and hair – as well as more advanced patchwork and applique designs to appeal to confident crafters. There’s even a colourful knitted draft excluder and cute cottage that would make the perfect housewarming gift.” (Abridged summary from

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Classical Music

This month’s Classical Music selection includes books dealing with the appeal of orchestras’ conductors, the history of the piano in colonial New Zealand, as well as a symphony inspired by WW1 and old Jazz classics.

Syndetics book coverMusic as alchemy / Tom Service.
“An immensely fun and engaging study of the art of orchestral conducting. How are conductors’ silent gestures magicked into sound by a group of more than a hundred brilliant but belligerent musicians? Orchestras can be inspired to the heights of musical and expressive possibility by their maestros, or flabbergasted that someone who doesn’t even make a sound should be elevated to demigod-like status by the public. This is the first book to go inside the rehearsal rooms of some of the most inspirational orchestral partnerships in the world. It’s the first to see how Simon Rattle works with his musicians at the Berlin Philharmonic, how Mariss Jansons deals with the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam, and how Claudio Abbado creates the world’s most luxurious pick-up band every year with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra. From London to Budapest, Bamberg to Vienna, great orchestral concerts are recreated as a collection of countless human and musical stories. The book reveals how the catalysts of place, time, and personal history are alchemised into the indelible magic of life-changing performances”. – (Adapted from ’s book description.)

Syndetics book coverPiano forte : stories and soundscapes from colonial New Zealand / Kirstine Moffat.
“In 1827 the newly wed Elizabeth Mair arrived in Paihia, on board the mission schooner Herald.Her treasured Broadwood grand square piano accompanied her, almost certainly the first piano to arrive in New Zealand. This instrument and the thousands of other pianos that followed provided European settlers with a reassuring sense of ‘home’ and at the same time introduced Maori to a new sound world…Piano forte … draws on memoirs, diaries, letters, concert programmes, company records, fiction and visual images. The stories end in 1930 when the increasing popularity of the phonograph, the radio and the introduction of the talkie movies were beginning to have a profound impact on people’s leisure activities” – (from cover summary)

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