Arts Newsletter for March

Kia ora and welcome to our latest update on new books about the arts at Wellington City Libraries. This month’s picks feature some great overviews of art and design trends, as well as some exciting new craft books. We are also re-introducing our Central library knitting circle – see the Craft section below for more details. Don’t forget to also take a look at our new classical CDs!

Library News


Here are some recent additions to our art book collection that are well worth seeking out.

Syndetics book cover Art + fashion : collaborations and connections between icons / by E.P. Cutler and Julien Tomasello.
Art + Fashion reveals the astonishing work that results when luminaries from the art world come together with icons of the fashion world . Represented in lavish visuals with thoughtful essays reflecting on the history of each project this books brims with the energy and possibility.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Art in minutes / Susie Hodge.
“The perfect compact reference guide for all would-be art buffs. Art historian Susie Hodge takes you on a whistle-stop international tour of all the major artistic cultures, movements, phases, developments, artists and themes.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Pop! : The World of Pop Art
“Exploring Pop art’s origins in modern European avant-garde movements such as Cubism and Dadaism, this compelling book also travels the world to examine how Pop art influenced artists as far afield as Italy, Spain, Finland, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. Key figures include Japan’s Yayoi Kusama and Italy’s Mimmo Rotella.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Modern Scottish Women: Painters and Sculptors 1885-1965 [paperback]
“This revelatory book concentrates on Scottish women painters and sculptors of the Glasgow School of Art and explores the experience and context of the artists and their place in Scottish art history, in terms of training, professional opportunities and personal links within the Scottish art world. A fresh look at the achievements of Scottish women artists of the modern period.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Find inspiration and have fun browsing through this collection of newly arrived craft books we have selected for you. For those of you who are interested in joining the library knitting group, you are welcome to join us at the Central Library to share your ideas and enthusiasm, with our devoted “Knit and chat” library knitters. A delicious morning tea is provided, and the latest craft books and magazines are offered for inspiration. The group meets on the last Saturday of every month on the first floor behind the escalator from 10am to 3pm. The next meeting will take place at Easter Saturday, 28th March – contact Sue Dale if you have any questions (phone 801 4146 or email

Syndetics book cover Knit scarves and shawls now.
“Discover over 40 fresh new designs for scarves, shawls, capelets, wraps and cowls that will add excitement to any wardrobe. Scarves and shawls are extremely versatile and are perfect for adding colour and character to an outfit. These designs range in style and shape and, depending on the yarn you choose, can be light & airy, thick & bulky, or elegantly lacy. There are plenty of projects to suit every knitter’s taste and experience level.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Banners, buntings, garlands & pennants : 40 creative ideas using paper, fabric & more / Kathy Sheldon and Amanda Carestio.
“Festive and eye-catching, banners, buntings, garlands, and pennants add visual fun to almost any type of celebration or space. These 40 quick and easy projects–made of paper, fabric, felt, and more–make beautiful displays. Use them for special events, for holidays, when entertaining, or even just to spice up a room. A basics section gives beginners a primer on the materials and techniques they need.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Aran & Nordic knits for kids : 25 designs for babies and young children / Martin Storey ; photography by Steven Wooster.
“With 25 great knits for little girls and boys, this Scandinavian inspired collection of designs by Martin Storey has a range of delightful projects. Features Aran-style textures and cables and Nordic-inspired colourwork, incorporating traditional patterns with a contemporary twist. The designs include a range of garments, such as coats, jackets, cardigans, sweaters and slipovers, plus accessories. There are also knits for the nursery.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Modern vintage gifts : over 20 pretty & nostalgic projects to sew & give / Helen Phillipps
“Sew a little love and give the gift of handmade with Vintage Modern Gifts! A bright contemporary collection of over 20 patchwork and sewn projects, designed to make readers smile and have fun with fabric from Helen Philipps – a popular craft designer whose highly desirable style is a cross between Cath Kidston and Tilda. The projects are all simple enough for beginners yet desirable enough for more experienced sewers, exploring different techniques including patchwork, quilting, paper piecing, appliqué, colour play, embroidery and embellishment. Projects include small quilts, dolls, bags, pillows, hearts, puppies, flowers, stars, angels and more – all in a gorgeous coordinating color palette, with charming hand-drawn illustrations and exquisite styled photography.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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A colourful selection of new items this month, featuring architectural reinvention and repurposing, and design books on colour, hand-lettering, and more.

Image from Fishpond The terrace house / edited by Cameron Bruhn & Katelin Butler.
“With British precedents and working-class origins, the Australian terrace house was once the home of bohemian artists, share-housing students and urban trailblazers. Today a new generation of homeowners are reimagining the terrace house for twenty-first-century living. This book is a catalogue of twenty of these renovations. It looks at the design challenges of terrace houses in general terms and describes the individual treatment of each property based on the site, the existing structure, the requirements of the owner, and the vision of the chosen architects.” (Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover High Line : the inside story of New York City’s park in the sky / Joshua David and Robert Hammond.
“The High Line is among the most innovative urban reclamation projects in memory. Two young citizens with no prior experience in planning and development collaborated with their neighbors, elected officials, artists, local business owners, and leaders in horticulture and landscape architecture to create a park celebrated worldwide as a model for creatively designed, socially vibrant, ecologically sound public space. Now the High Line–a half-mile expanse of plants, paths, staircases, and framed vistas–runs through a transformed West Side and reminds us that extraordinary things are possible when creative people work together for the common good.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover Hand-lettering for everyone : a creative workbook / Cristina Vanko.
“Hand-lettering is more popular than ever. This beautiful and inviting book serves as an inspiring primer and an interactive workbook. Creative prompts encourage readers to create their own serifs, create lettering from found objects, make a type self-portrait, collage with found type, recreate a favorite book cover with hand-lettering, play with shading and perspective, and more. Featuring a lively (and hand-lettered) design and engaging exercises, the book will appeal to designers and illustrators as well as doodlers, hobbyists, and anyone who enjoys putting real pen to real paper.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)
Syndetics book cover 100 Years of Colour: Beautiful images & inspirational palettes from a century of innovative art, illustration & design [hardback]
“This beautiful book features 100 carefully chosen images from the graphic arts, each representing a colour palette for every year of the 20th century. The images are taken from a variety of sources including magazines, book covers, adverts, posters, illustrations and postcards. The palettes taken from the images are displayed in a number of ratios, demonstrating the different effects achieved when altering the dominant colour. Ten palettes per decade gives an authentic overview of the colours and trends of an era, making this an ideal historical reference for anyone working in set or interior design, graphic design, illustrations or fashion.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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Classical Music

In this installment, super guitarist Miloš Karadaglić tackles the Beatles with guest appearances by people as varying as Steven Isserlis and Tori Amos. Violin and piano pieces are also featured, plus an ode to water through music.

ClassicalrecentMar16a1 Blackbird: The Beatles Album. Performed by Miloš Karadaglić (guitar).
“After delighting audiences with the core-classical heritage of the guitar in his three previous albums, award-winning guitarist Milos Karadaglic now makes a thrilling new departure. He performs innovative new arrangements of songs by the Beatles, collaborating with celebrated artists from the pop, jazz, classical and world music fields, including Tori Amos, Anoushka Shankar, Gregory Porter, Sergio Assad and Steven Isserlis. Songs include Blackbird, Come Together, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Eleanor Rigby, Fool on the Hill and many others. The album was recorded in the famous Studio 2 of Abbey Road Studios, where the Beatles recorded almost all of their songs. The sessions also used some of the original microphones…” (
ClassicalrecentMar16a3 Violin Concertos, Korngold, Britten. Performed by Vilde Frang with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony (James Gaffigan conducting).
“Both concertos on this new disc were written when their composers were exiles in the USA around the time of World War II. The Korngold was completed in 1945, the Britten in 1939. In the course of the 1930s Korngold, an Austrian Jew, had become a prominent Hollywood composer, but could not return to his homeland after 1938; the young Britten, a pacifist, left the UK for New York shortly before the declaration of war in 1939. Both composers had been child prodigies and both concertos are centered aound the key of D, the most ‘natural’ key on the vioin and the tonal focus for the violin concertos fo Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky and Stravinsky.” (
ClassicalrecentFeb16b2 Water. Performed by Hélène Grimaud, with Nitin Sawhney.
Water is an evocative, experimental and deeply personal musical project from one of the most captivating pianists of today, Hélène Grimaud, combining her two greatest passions: music and nature…. Grimaud performs great, water-themed romantic and contemporary repertoire, and in addition to these traditional evocations of rivers, lakes, seas, snowflakes and raindrops, Nitin Sawhney’s Transitions are woven into the album’s ‘narrative’ as newly composed reflections upon water as a feature of nature, its spiritual connotations, and its role in the world today” (cover).
ClassicalrecentFeb16a3 Schumann. Performed by Jan Lisiecki with the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia (Antonio Pappano conducting again).
“Jan Lisiecki has dreamt of recording Schumann’s Piano Concerto with Antonio Pappano and his Rome orchestra ever since they first played the piece together in 2012. Their shared experience creates an interpretation of chamber-music-like intimacy. Schumann’s concerto is here presented in a rare pairing with his only other completed works for piano and orchestra.” (Cover)

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