Artists and their worlds : New art books

This month’s picks feature the worlds of artists and their influences — both the mundane and everyday, as well as the times they lived in. From the intimacy of objects arranged in still life, to the influence of their contemporaries and the wider world and time they lived in, there’s plenty to be discovered here. Have a browse!

Van Gogh and the artists he loved / Naifeh, Steven
“To us, Van Gogh’s paintings look utterly unique. His vivid palates and wildly interpretive portraits are unmistakably his — yet however revolutionary his style may have been, it was actually built on a strong foundation of paintings by other artists, both his contemporaries and those who came before him. Now, drawing on Van Gogh’s own thoughtful and often poetic comments about the artists he venerated, Steven Naifeh gives a gripping account of his deep immersion in their work.” (Catalogue)

Frida Kahlo : her universe.
“The iconic Mexican painter as seen through over 300 archival items, from her wardrobe to her personal art collection This compendium presents the rich diversity of themes, ideas, concepts and emotions generated around two fundamental, iconic figures of modern Mexico: painter Frida Kahlo and her husband, muralist Diego Rivera. More than 300 images from the archives of the Museo Frida Kahlo in Mexico City offer readers a glimpse of Kahlo’s distinctive wardrobe and the impressive collections of popular and pre-Hispanic art she assembled with Rivera, her connection with photography and the history of La casa azul, her beloved cobalt-blue home that now serves as the museum’s main building.” (Catalogue)

The radical potter : the life and times of Josiah Wedgwood / Hunt, Tristram
“From one of Britain’s leading historians and the director of the Victoria & Albert Museum, a scintillating biography of Josiah Wedgwood, the celebrated eighteenth-century potter, entrepreneur, and abolitionist” (Catalogue)

This dark country : women artists, still life and intimacy in the early Twentieth century / Birrell, Rebecca
“Lemons gleam in a bowl. Flowers fan out softly in a vase. A door swings open in a sparsely furnished room. What is contained in a still life – and what falls out of the frame? For women artists in the early twentieth century, including Ethel Sands, Nina Hamnett, Vanessa Bell and Gwen John, who lived in and around the Bloomsbury Group, this art form was a conduit for their lives, their rebellions, their quiet loves for men and women. Gluck, who challenged the framing of her gender and her art, painted flowers arranged by the woman she loved; Dora Carrington, a Slade School graduate, recorded eggs on a table at Tidmarsh Mill, where she built a richly fulfilling if delicate life with Lytton Strachey. But for every artist we remember, there is one we have forgotten; who leaves only elusive traces; whose art was replaced by being a mother or wife; whose remaining artworks lie dusty in archives or attics…” (Catalogue)

Verrocchio, sculptor and painter of Renaissance Florence
“A comprehensive survey of the work of this most influential Florentine artist and teacher. Andrea del Verrocchio (c. 1435-1488) was one of the most versatile and inventive artists of the Italian Renaissance. He created art across media, from his spectacular sculptures and paintings to his work in goldsmithing, architecture, and engineering. His expressive, confident drawings provide a key point of contact between sculpture and painting. He led a vibrant workshop where he taught young artists who later became some of the greatest painters of the period, including Leonardo da Vinci, Sandro Botticelli, Lorenzo di Credi, and Domenico Ghirlandaio. This beautifully illustrated book presents a comprehensive survey of Verrocchio’s art.” (Catalogue)

Books in every room : Interior design for 2022

Picture of a cute, open plan lounge

“The essence of interior design will always be about people and how they live. Albert Hadley

It’s a fresh new year, so why not give your home a fresh new look? Would you like to incorporate your family history into your living spaces? Maybe you’d like some ideas for thriving in your apartment? The below booklist is a great place to start if you’re embarking on an interior design project in 2022!

Need even more inspiration? Head over to our online magazine collection through Libby, which gives library members free access to an extensive Home & Garden collection.


Home stories : design ideas for making a house a home / Leggett, Kim
“Learn how to create rooms filled with warmth, meaning, and your own unique story of home. Kim Leggett’s first book, City Farmhouse Style, was a big hit. Now Kim is back with the welcoming interiors her fans crave and a no-rules approach that is all about using what you love to create rooms that tell your personal story.  (Catalogue)

Kelly Hoppen’s essential style solutions for every home / Hoppen, Kelly
“Kelly Hoppen, multi-award-winning designer and TV personality, shares her essential style solutions that will transform your home. Kelly knows what works, and here she shows you how to do it by bringing together creative ideas and inspiration alongside a wealth of professional know-how, practical advice and cost-effective style solutions that can work for every home, big or small.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The new mindful home and how to make it yours / Thornhill, Joanna
“How do you create a space that calms and revives you? Thornhill cuts through the fads to offer practical solutions to home-based problems. She shows you how to create supportive room layouts, consider the mindful effects of colour, and embrace natural and sustainable elements in your home. — adapted from back cover” (Catalogue)

A blissful nest : designing a stylish and well-loved home / Dempsey, Rebekah
“In Blissful Nest, celebrated interior designer Rebekah Dempsey offers hundreds of fresh and attainable design ideas to show you how to discover your interior style and create a home that best reflects your personality and the way you live”– Provided by publisher.” (Catalogue)

Workstead : interiors of beauty and necessity.
“Workstead designs one-of-a-kind interiors and pieces that balance beauty with necessity, and this book presents a special blend of their tour-de-force historic renovations and innovative yet elegant new constructions.'”–Publisher’s description.” (Catalogue)

Victoria Hagan : live now / Hagan, Victoria
“As an acclaimed interior designer and member of the AD100 and the Interior Design Hall of Fame, Victoria Hagan had achieved the highest pinnacle of success in her field. But when 2020 arrived, she found herself, like all of us, at home, seeing her life and her space with fresh eyes. The result is this book–a creative manifesto and a life-affirming look at the nature of home, and how it connects and calms us, comforts and nourishes us.” (Catalogue)

Books do furnish a room : display, organize, store / Geddes-Brown, Leslie
“As all book lovers know, a collection of books affords not only access to endless pleasure and knowledge, but also, when skilfully deployed around the home, the opportunity to create a multitude of decorative impressions. In this beautifully illustrated guide –  self-confessed bibliophile Leslie Geddes-Brown offers inspirational yet practical ideas about how to make the most of books in every room.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Living in tiny homes : big ideas for small spaces / Hellweg, Marion
“Practical tips, design ideas and storage solutions for small homes & tiny houses”–Page 1 of cover.” (Catalogue)

 

Upcoming interview with photographer Professor Anne Noble

Professor Anne Noble
Anne in beesuit (All photographs are Copyrighted by Anne Noble and Massey University press and are reproduced with kind permission.)

Professor Anne Noble is one of the most highly regarded and acclaimed art photographers and conceptual artists working in Aotearoa / New Zealand.

Professor Noble’s photographic and conceptual works have gained her a major international reputation. Her work has been exhibited globally and is held in numerous national and international collections.

In 2003 Professor Noble was awarded the Order of Merit for services to photography in New Zealand. In 2009 she received a New Zealand Arts Foundation Laureate Award and was awarded the Massey University individual research medal. In 2013 Anne was appointed Distinguished Professor of Fine Art.

Professor Noble’s previous bodies of work include pieces examining Antarctica, her own daughter’s mouth, pieces on the significance of memory and imagination to personal and cultural narratives of place and belonging and most recently Forests.

Her practice spans various mediums from moving image, still photography, sound, and installation work.

Bruissement_05_003 (All photographs are Copyrighted by Anne Noble and Massey University press and are reproduced with kind permission.)

We visited her recent exhibition at the Bartley & Company Art Gallery to talk to Anne about the exhibition and the associated book Conversātiō – in the company of bees which has just been published by Massey university press. It’s a beautiful publication and contains lots of stunning, and occasionally intense works, all imagery from Ann’s various Bee related exhibitions. And features illuminating essays to accompany the pictures from several guest Essayists.

Bees have long fascinated Professor Noble and been in various aspect and guises at the core of many of her exhibitions over recent years.

Professor Noble herself is a beekeeper, and has studied their history and culture, and recently her work has looked closely at their uncertain future due to climate change and ecosystem collapse.

We were over the moon when Professor Noble very kindly agreed to a filmed Q and A interview with Wellington City Libraries.

We wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to Massey university press, Bartley & Company Art Gallery in Wellington and especially Professor Anne Noble herself for her time and enlightening and thoughtfully replies to our questions.

Click here for more information on Professor Anne Noble’s practice.

Visit Bartley & Company Art Gallery for more information. Including Anne’s forthcoming exhibition  In a forest dark… (25 November – 18 December 2021 )

Dead Bee Portrait#14 (All photographs are Copyrighted by Anne Noble and Massey University press and are reproduced with kind permission.)

Conversatio : In the company of bees / Noble, Anne

“Lavishly illustrated book to accompany Professor Anne Noble’s Bee themed exhibitions staged internationally over the course of several years. With guest essayists commenting and illuminating various points and themes explored in these bodies of work.”

(Adapted from Catalogue )

 

 

Slow release : recent photography from New Zealand : Fiona Amundsen, Gavin Hipkins, Anne Noble, Fiona Pardington, Peter Peryer, Ann Shelton, Yvonne Todd

Catalogue of an exhibition at the Heide Museum of Modern Art, Bulleen, Victoria 10 August – 22 September 2002; the Gippsland Art Gallery Sale 16 November – 15 December 2002; and the Adam Art Gallery, Victoria University of Wellington, 2003.Supported by the Chartwell Trust. And including bibliographical references.” (Adapted from Catalogue )

Surrealist Art at Te Papa: interview with curator Lizzie Bisley

Surrealist Art at Te Papa

The Te Papa Surrealist exhibition is now open and affords visitors the (ultra-rare) chance to see 180 surrealist masterpieces from Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam. The exhibition includes sculpture, furniture, paintings, graphic design, prints, and photography.

As a special accompaniment for this exceptional exhibition, we recently had the pleasure of interviewing its curator Lizzie Bisley (Curator Modern Art at Te Papa) in conjunction with the Caffeine and Aspirin arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM.

Below is the podcast of that interview for your enjoyment:

The Te Papa’s Surrealist exhibition runs until 31 October in Te Papa’s gallery— (Please note, charges apply.)

This exhibition features major works by all key surrealist artists such as Salvador Dalí, René Magritte, Marcel Duchamp, Leonora Carrington, and Man Ray. To get you fully informed before you go along to the exhibition, visit the library, and browse or borrow from our extensive collection of Surrealism on our Catalogue. 

 

“Pure psychic automatism” – Surrealist masterpieces coming soon to Te Papa

Coming to Te Papa on the 12th of June there will be the ultra-rare chance to see 180 surrealist masterpieces from Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam.

The Te Papa Surrealist exhibition runs until 31 October in Te Papa’s gallery, Toi Art. Te Papa is the only venue in the Asia Pacific region to host the exhibition, and as a city we’re incredibly lucky to have this opportunity to view these artworks — which include sculpture, furniture, paintings, graphic design, prints, and photography.

Surrealist Art at Te Papa Exhibition

This exhibition features major works by all key surrealist artists such as Salvador Dalí, René Magritte, Marcel Duchamp, Leonora Carrington, and Man Ray.

Salvador Dalí, Couple with their heads in the clouds, oil on panel, 1936. Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam. Purchase with the support of: the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen Foundation, the Rembrandt Association, the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, the Erasmusstichting and Stichting Bevordering van Volkskracht. Photo: Studio Tromp. © Salvador Dalí, Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí/VEGAP. Copyright Agency, 2020.

About Surrealism

Pure psychic automatism, is how co-founder of André Robert Breton French writer and poet and author of the First Manifesto of Surrealism (Manifeste du Surréalisme) defined Surrealism:

Psychic automatism in its pure state, by which one proposes to express — verbally, by means of the written word, or in any other manner — the actual functioning of thought. Dictated by thought, in the absence of any control exercised by reason, exempt from any aesthetic or moral concern.

Surrealism was birthed from the fiery remnants of the Dada movement, which was a direct reaction to the propaganda and mechanised slaughter of the First World War. Dada was a mirror to the insanity of the world at the time: the Dadaists saw society’s embrace of progress and rationalism as the problem, and so the movement was anti-idealistic, anti-rational and anti-aesthetic.

Both Surrealism and Dada shared a lot in common — they both incorporated a condemnation of Western logic and reason. However, whilst the Dadaists were unfocused and often nonsensical with a deep suspicion of meaning, the Surrealists were linked to the works of Freud and Jung and were often attempting to tap into the unconscious subliminal world; trying to create images that represented the dream world’s mysteries and secrets and finding powerful motivation for looking for meaning in those subconscious worlds. Both movements served as core precursors to today’s art world, and many modern art movements such as performance art and post modernism originated in these movements.

To get you fully informed before you go along to the exhibition, Wellington City Libraries has an extensive collection of Surrealist books. We’ve highlighted a few below, but you can also browse them on our catalogue:

Surrealism on our Catalogue


Salvador Dali : 1904-1989 / Descharnes, Robert
“Picasso called Dali “”an outboard motor that’s always running.”” Dali thought himself a genius with a right to indulge in whatever lunacy popped into his head. Painter, sculptor, writer, and filmmaker, Salvador Dali (1904-1989) was one of the century’s greatest exhibitionists and eccentrics. He was one of the first to apply the insights of Sigmund Freud and psychoanalysis to the art of painting, approaching the subconscious with extraordinary sensitivity and imagination. ” (Adapted from Catalogue)

René Magritte, 1898-1967 / Meuris, Jacques
“The works of Rene Magritte (1898 – 1967) and the ideas that underlie them are a special case both in the history of modern art and in surrealist painting. In the search for the “”mystery”” in which things and organisms are enveloped, Magritte created pictures which, taking everyday reality as their starting point, were to follow a different logic from that to which we are accustomed. Magritte depicts the world of reality in such unsecretive superficiality that the beholder of his pictures is forced to reflect that the mystery of it is not evoked by some sentimental transfiguration, but rather by the logic of his thoughts and associations. ” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The Duchamp book / Parkinson, Gavin
“Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968) was, without doubt, one of the most influential and controversial artists of the twentieth century. No other figure has attracted such a wealth of often contradictory interpretation and commentary. Associated with Cubism, Dada and Surrealism and widely seen as a forerunner of conceptual art, he avoided being too closely allied with any one movement. Credited with the invention of the ‘readymade’ and a champion of what he termed ‘non-retinal art,’ he was responsible for some of the most iconic works of his era.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Leonora Carrington : surrealism, alchemy and art / Aberth, Susan
“This, the first book on Leonora Carrington (b. 1917), provides a fascinating overview of this intriguing artist’s life and rich body of work. Carrington’s preoccupation with alchemy and the occult, and the influence of indigenous Mexican culture and beliefs on her production are all explored.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Man Ray : photography and its double
“Man Ray delighted the avant-garde of the 1920s and 1930s with daring, creative experimentation. He was the first Surrealist photographer, a gifted rebel with an incisive eye and a passion for freedom and pleasure.This outstanding monograph sheds new light on Man Ray’s photographic genius — incredibly, around one third of these images have never before been published. Visually spectacular and intellectually stimulating it shatters the myth — cultivated by Man Ray himself — that his photographic creativity resulted from timely mistakes and chance occurrences.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The age of light / Scharer, Whitney
“A novel inspired by the life of the Vogue model-turned-renowned photographer finds Lee Miller relocating to 1929 Paris, where she becomes the muse and colleague of the mercurial surrealist, Man Ray.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The hearing trumpet / Carrington, Leonora
“The Hearing Trumpet is the story of 92-year-old Marian Leatherby, who is given the gift of a hearing trumpet only to discover that what her family is saying is that she is to be committed to an institution. But this is an institution where the buildings are shaped like birthday cakes and igloos, where the Winking Abbess and the Queen Bee reign, and where the gateway to the underworld is open. It is also the scene of a mysterious murder. Occult twin to Alice in Wonderland, The Hearing Trumpet is a classic of fantastic literature that has been translated and celebrated throughout the world.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Landscapes and places that inspired great art: new art books in May

Need some visual inspiration? The topics of this month’s new art books include: 25 famous and forgotten artistic destinations around the world, contextualised by art historian Susie Hodge, the history of graffiti and street art movements internationally, a guide to block printing, and more. Have a browse and enjoy!

Artistic places / Hodge, Susie
“Explore the landscapes and places that inspired great art: find peace in Monet’s lily-filled garden oasis, climb Mount Fuji on a printmaker’s pilgrimage, sail with Gauguin to the South Pacific to stretch your imagination, or contemplate light and the changing seasons on Chelsea Embankment. Artistic Places is a stunningly illustrated, visionary guide for seekers of beauty, rare tales and cultural riches. Find yourself instantly transported to the places where great artists have sought refuge, found their inspiration and changed the course of art history forever.” (Catalogue)

Art in the streets
“The most comprehensive book to survey the colorful history of graffiti and street art movements internationally. Forty years ago, graffiti in New York evolved from elementary mark-making into an important art form. By the end of the 1980s, it had been documented in books and films that were seen around the world, sparking an international graffiti movement. This original edition, now back in print after several years, considers the rise of New York graffiti and the international scenes it inspired–from Los Angeles to Sao Paulo to Paris to Tokyo.” (Catalogue)

Art sleeves : album covers by artists / Burkeman, DB
“Art Sleeves is a time capsule of visual art and music culture as shown through the most important record covers designed by visual artists and graphic designers in the past forty years. This tightly curated collection of covers chosen includes works with significant cultural impact as well as collaborations that themselves created cultural fascination. The eclectic roster of visual artist-musician collaborations presented spans art and musical genres as well as generations, including Ryan McGinley for Sigur Rós, Kara Walker for Arto Lindsay, Peter Saville for Joy Division, Barbara Kruger for Growing Up Skipper, Jeff Koons for Lady Gaga, Tauba Auerbach for Glasser, and Stanley Donwood for Radiohead, to name a few. From postmodernist paintings and minimalism to collage and photography, as well as New Wave, emo, pop, and punk, the albums chosen present a bright and rich visual and cultural history.” (Catalogue)

House of print : a modern block printer’s take on design, colour and pattern / Mahon, Molly
“The ancient art of block printing has stood the test of time. From the first bolt of inspiration, to the thrilling reveal of the pattern, printmaker Molly Mahon shows you how to develop your own style and turn unique designs into beautiful pieces for the home.” (Catalogue)

Pottery : 20 mindful makes to reconnect head, heart & hands / Davidson, Lucy
“Learn how to create simple, modern makes — all without the need for a wheel or kiln. Featuring basic techniques and simple clay recipes, Lucy Davidson provides ideas for making and decorating 20 playful pottery pieces with clear step-by-step instructions and life-affirming mindful quotes, accompanied by clean photography and contemporary illustrations. From plant hanger pots to tealight holders, festive decorations to serving dishes — there’s plenty to enhance your home and your wellbeing.” (Catalogue)

Ken Done : art, design, life / Bell, Amber Creswell
“At once ad man and artist, designer and entrepreneur, Ken Done has achieved what few others have. His signature style has graced ad campaigns and art cars, magazine covers and doona covers, public spaces and landmark cultural events, but it is his unabating passion for painting that sustains him. For more than forty years, Done has chronicled the Australian way, documenting how it feels to be Australian with an exuberance that is immediately recognisable. Ken Done: Art Design Life documents Done’s expansive art and design practice over four decades and provides a fascinating insight into the artist and his oeuvre.” (Catalogue)

Drawing and Painting Guides: New Art Books

If your new year’s resolution was to pick up some artistic skills, you’re in luck! This month we’ve got an influx of great arty how-to, including drawing, sketching, and painting. Maybe even branch out further and try paint pouring with The Paint Pouring Workshop, or get into comics and animation with Draw Great Characters and Creatures.

Overdrive cover Botanical Line Drawing, Peggy Dean (ebook)
Botanical Line Drawing teaches you how to start with the simplest doodles, building into more elaborate, delicate illustrations. These simple line drawings will allow you to branch out and have fun with your own personal style, as well as inspire you to add flourishes to other projects.” (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Draw great characters and creatures : 75 art exercises for comics and animation / Johnson, Beverly
“Learn to make your characters unique, compelling and lifelike with these 75 exercises for all skill levels, including beginners. Topics include tools and materials; shapes; personalities; facial expressions; body language; character interaction; and costuming. Character types featured include more than just humans; learn how to draw animals, plants, creatures and more.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The 15-minute artist : the quick and easy way to draw almost anything / Holmes, Catherine V.
“If you want to draw but think you don’t have the time to learn -or feel too intimidated to start- 15-Minute Artist invites you to jump in. Bestselling author Catherine Holmes provides more than 60 step-by-step projects for depicting animals, food, plants, household items, and more–and you can complete each one in just 15 minutes. Her tutorials break the process down so you can achieve quick, satisfying results.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The paint pouring workshop : learn to create dazzling abstract art with acrylic pouring / Ferro, Marcy
“Jump into the exciting world of paint pouring — and instantly create dazzling, abstract art — with this comprehensive how-to guide by the popular founder of the Mixed Media Girl YouTube channel. In this fun, colorful guide, Marcy Ferro explains everything about working in this popular form.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Ink : do more art / Davies, Bridget
Ink is the first in an exciting new practical-art series on popular mediums, including acrylic, oil, pencil and gouache. The books will cover painting techniques, creative ideas and applications, and the fun of mixing with other mediums. Many of the techniques and ideas will be demonstrated through the work of some of the world’s greatest artists and illustrators. With its contemporary aesthetic and accessible content, the series will appeal to artists of all abilities.” (Catalogue)

Urban sketching step by step / Meier-Pauken, Klaus
“The next inspiring instalment by artist and architect Klau Meir-Pauken, showing you how to sketch our industrial, hustling, urban world – and discover your inner artist. Reawaken the art of our ancestors and join the growing movement of reactionary artists, and learn how to capture our fast-paced world in this inspiring book by popular artist and author, Klaus Meier-Pauken.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Painting masterclass : creative techniques of 100 great artists / Hodge, Susie
“The book is organized into seven chapters covering important genres: nudes, figures, landscapes, still life, heads, fantasy and abstraction. Each chapter selects a cross section of artists and examines their practice in detail, using key paintings. Light and shade, rhythm, form, space, contour and composition are all covered in detail.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The field guide to drawing & sketching animals / Pond, Tim
“Artist Tim Pond’s lively and engaging book fuses science with art, providing the reader with the skills, techniques and knowledge they need to create sketches of animals filled with life and movement. Combining scientific knowledge with expert practical guidance is key to creating successful drawings of animals, and Tim’s ability to convey this in a way that is both accessible and engaging makes this a unique and inspiring guide suitable for artists of all levels.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Perceptions of Art: New Books

Check out some of the recent additions to our art sections – this time with a focus on how we look at and appreciate different works of art. These books span from classical paintings, all the way through to modern design and the creativity of artificial intelligence.

Look again : how to experience the Old Masters / Ward, Ossian
“An approachable guide to Old Masterpaintings from a newperspective that offers a simple aid to looking at and demystifying the often obscure strategies of the greatest painters of all time. Look Again does not deny the specific complexities and barriers associated with looking at art from other eras, instead it offers methods that not only provide the viewer with the tools to interpret the art, but also assumes that we intuitively hold some of this knowledge within ourselves already.” (adapted from Catalogue)

From A to Eames : a visual guide to mid-century modern design / Whybrow, Lauren
“This sophisticated A to Z picture book for adults is an illustrated journey through midcentury modern design, perfect for any reader with a keen eye for style. With eighty tales of design, laid out in a fun and easy-to-read A to Z format, design lovers will be reading this book to each other before bed. If you didn’t know that E stands for Eames, Egg Chair, and Elrod House (or don’t know what any of those words actually mean) then this book belongs on your coffee table. And if you can’t afford an Eames coffee table, then rejoice in knowing that From A to Eames makes an inexpensive and equally satisfying alternative.” (adapted from Catalogue)

Overdrive cover Old in Art School, Nell Painter (Audiobook)
Following her retirement from Princeton University, celebrated historian Dr. Nell Irvin Painter surprised everyone in her life by returning to school-in her sixties-to earn a BFA and MFA in painting. In Old in Art School, she travels from her beloved Newark to the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design; finds meaning in the artists she loves. (Adapted from Overdrive description)

Great women artists
“Five centuries of fascinating female creativity presented in more than 400 compelling artworks and one comprehensive volume. In museums, galleries, and the art market, previously overlooked female artists, past and present, are now gaining recognition and value. This essential volume reveals a parallel yet equally engaging history of art for an age that champions a greater diversity of voices.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Colin McCahon : there is only one direction. Vol. I 1919-1959 / Simpson, Peter
“The first of an extraordinary two-volume work chronicling forty-five years of painting by New Zealand’s most important artist, Colin McCahon. This material enables us to begin to understand McCahon’s work as the artist himself conceived it. This will be the definitive work on New Zealand’s leading artist for many years to come.” (adapted from Catalogue)

The creativity code : how AI is learning to write, paint and think / Du Sautoy, Marcus
“As humans, we have an extraordinary ability to create works of art that elevate, expand and transform what it means to be alive. But can machines be creative? Marcus finds out how long it might be before machines come up with something creative, and whether they might jolt us into being more imaginative in turn. The result is a fascinating and very different exploration into both AI and the essence of what it means to be human.” (adapted from Catalogue)

Almost lost arts : traditional crafts and the artisans keeping them alive / Freidenrich, Emily
“The perfect antidote to the digital age. This book celebrates twenty artisans around the world who are breathing new life into traditional crafts. Gorgeous photographs reveal these craftspeople’s studios, from Oaxaca to Kyoto and from Milan to Tennessee. Two essays explore the challenges and rewards of engaging deeply with the past. With an elegant three-piece case and foil stamping, this rich volume will be an inspiration to makers, collectors, and history lovers.” (adapted from Catalogue)

The story of painting : how art was made.
“A fascinating new history of art, this gloriously illustrated book reveals how materials, techniques, and ideas have evolved over the centuries, inspiring artists and giving them the means to create their most celebrated works. Covering a comprehensive array of topics. The Story of Painting follows each step in the evolution of painting over the last 25,000 years, from the first cave paintings to the abstract works of the last 150 years.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Rick Steves Europe’s top 100 masterpieces : art for the traveler / Steves, Rick
“This essay collection features Rick’s unique take on Europe’s best-known works of art, from the Venus de Milo and the Mona Lisa to Picasso’s Guernica, providing historical context as well as a personal examination of the pieces. The book also covers Europe’s most striking architecture… sure to inspire both history buffs and novice travelers alike.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Finding inspiration – The latest books and magazines in art

Our newest additions to the collection have a shared focus on mixed media, and how we can use this to really convey our perceptions of the world. We take a look at New Zealand artist Douglas MacDiarmid, some new approaches to how we create art, and finish off with a highlight of some of our digital magazines available through RBdigital, including our recent subscription to the Australian storytelling magazine Dumbo Feather.

Textile landscape : painting with cloth in mixed media / Holmes, Cas
“Textile Landscapes demonstrates how to develop your approach to textile art with a focus on using found objects and paint and stitch on cloth and paper. Cas looks at both urban and intimate spaces, capturing the changing seasons, the technical aspects of painting and dying cloth, experimenting with photos, creating stitchscapes, attaining inspiration from found objects, and so much more.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

 

Overdrive cover Paint Pouring, Rick Cheadle (ebook)
“Paint Pouring is a form of abstract art that uses acrylic paints with a runny (fluid) consistency. The acrylic paints react with each other when combined to make interesting and visually organic motifs. Fluid acrylics can be used on many types of substrates through various techniques such as pouring, dripping, swirling, glazing, dipping, and more to create dazzling and masterful effects.”
(Adapted from Overdrive description)

 

Colours of a life : the life and times of Douglas MacDiarmid / Cahill, Anna
“This biography is the lively, persuasive and colourful story of a talented bisexual man who had to leave New Zealand to find a life as a painter on his own terms. Now almost 95, still resident in Paris, he is oldest survivor of his extraordinary generation of creative New Zealanders, and perhaps a missing link — the one who got away and slid under the radar for choosing to pursue a global career rather than a domestic living.” (Catalogue)

 

Overdrive cover The Watercolor Course You’ve Always Wanted, Leslie Frontz (ebook)
Through thoughtful discussion, expert instruction, and in-depth step-by-step demonstrations, Leslie Frontz shows readers how to eliminate common barriers to achieve beautiful, captivating watercolor paintings. Beginning with teaching readers how to see with an artist’s eye, Frontz then establishes how watercolor painters build on this skill by making timely decisions throughout the creation process. (Overdrive description)

 

Dumbo Feather
Dumbo Feather is an iconic Australian magazine. Published quarterly for seven years, and hailed around the world as a design leader, it is a magazine like no other. Our readers are people who want to be told a different story than the one they hear every day. Each quarterly issue features five extended (20 page) profiles of people worth knowing, across enterprise, education, science, sport, politics, fashion and the arts. Whether they’ve touched millions, or just those around them, we take the time to get to know these people, and ask them to tell us their stories. (RBdigital description)

Artists & Illustrators
Artists & Illustrators is the UK’s best-selling magazine for artists and art lovers, providing advice and inspiration every month. Whether you favour oils or watercolours, portraits or landscapes, abstract art or botanical illustration, Artists & Illustrators brings a refreshing blend of creativity and advice every four weeks throughout the year. (RBdigital description)

Guggenheim Museum Library Collection Released Online!

If you are one of the people who have felt the sudden and unexpected–though temporary–lack of access to Wellington Central libraries’ fantastic art book collection, then we have something to ease the pain: the world-renowned Guggenheim Museum Library’s free online resources!

The founder and creator of this museum was the American heiress and self-confessed art addict Peggy Guggenheim. Her support and patronage of 20th century modern artists placed her at the very centre of the modern art movement. She was a unique, colourful, larger than life personality.

This free resource has over 200 art works covering key artists such as Picasso, Rothko, Ernst and Kandinsky and art subjects as wide as Surrealism, pop, Aztec artefacts and Russian constructivism. Just click the link here to access this fabulous resource. Enjoy!

Also available at Wellington City Libraries:

Peggy Guggenheim : the shock of the modern / Prose, Francine
“A biography of one of twentieth century America’s most influential patrons of the arts that covers her personal life, uncompromising spirit, and relationships with such modern masters as Jackson Pollock and Man Ray.” (Catalogue)

 

 

The unfinished palazzo : life, love and art in Venice : the stories of Luisa Casati, Doris Castlerosse and Peggy Guggenheim / Mackrell, Judith
“The story of Venice’s ‘Unfinished Palazzo’–told through the lives of three of its most unconventional, passionate, and fascinating residents: Luisa Casati, Doris Castlerosse, and Peggy Guggenheim. Each vivid life story is accompanied by previously unseen materials from family archives, weaving an intricate history of these legendary art world eccentrics.” (Catalogue)

 

And The Fantastic Peggy Guggenheim : art addict. documentary film is also available to borrow from several of our branches . Click Here for full details.