Inspire Newtown Library’s new mural

Join artists Liana Leiataua and Ruth Robertson-Taylor at one of two workshops to create your own saipo (tapa) which will inspire a new mural for the community. The new mural will replace the eye-catching artwork which was originally installed to welcome people into the Newtown Library and Smart Newtown in 1991.

The workshops are suitable for people of all ages – so bring down the whanau or a group of friends. The workshops will be held in Newtown Library at 13 Constable street on 10:30am-noon, Wednesday 27 January or 2-3:30pm, Saturday 30 January.

All you need to bring is an one item from the Newtown environment (such as a leaf or flower) and one personal item!

If you are unable to make a workshop, create your own creative canvas! These will be on display at the Newtown Library throughout February 2021. Plus your creative artwork will go into a draw to win prizes from local businesses Newtown New World and Peoples Coffee who are supporting this community event.

How to enter

Entries need to be submitted by Monday 1 February 2021.

For more information email arts@wcc.govt.nz

Four Writers writing about Newtown….Now exclusively online

We recently had the great pleasure  of staging an event with Rachel Kerr author of Victory Park, Carl Shuker author of A Mistake, Michalia Arathimos author of Aukati and poet  Jackson Nieuwland reading their poem from their collection I am a human being in conversation with Mary McCallum at our  Newtown library.

These four esteemed authors all shared their experiences  about setting their works in Newtown. Each writer having a distinctly different take on  Newtown, with very different voices and all with very different things to say.

If you missed the live event we recorded it live and it’s now available for everyone. Enjoy!

The authors involved were…

Rachel Kerr has exploded onto the New Zealand literary scene with her debut novel Victory Park. About a single mother living on a block of flats in a fictionalised Newtown. Her life is humdrum until the mysterious Bridget moves into the flats, bringing with her unexpected friendship, glamour and wild dreams.

Carl Shuker’s A Mistake. When an operation what goes wrong, in a hospital based on Wellington Regional Hospital in Newtown a young woman dies, who is culpable and who is to blame. The moral and ethical repercussions of this tragic event are explored in this masterful work which was shortlisted for the Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize 2020.

Michalia Arathimos’s Aukati begins with two people arriving at a marae to protest fracking at a nearby farm. Family, political protest and culture intersect in this thoughtful, elegant, moving, and economically written novel. Michalia Arathimos describes herself as a Greek-New Zealander she currently is the Writer in Residence at Randell Cottage and will hold the Grimshaw Sargeson Fellowship in 2021.

Poet Jackson Nieuwland has been a busy person not only releasing their first beautiful, complex and surreal collection of poetry I am a Human Being, but also opening Food Court Books in Newtown and is also in the process of launching their own publishing house. This promises to be an unmissable event and all are very welcome.


Victory Park / Kerr, Rachel
“Kara lives in Victory Park council flats with her young son, just making a living by minding other people’s kids – her nightly smoke on the fire escape the only time she can drop her guard and imagine something better. But the truth is life is threadbare and unpromising until the mysterious Bridget moves in to the flats. The wife of a disgraced Ponzi schemer she brings with her glamour and wild dreams and an unexpected friendship. Drawn in, Kara forgets for a moment who she’s there to protect.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

A mistake / Shuker, R. Carl
“Elizabeth Taylor is a surgeon at a city hospital, a gifted, driven and rare woman excelling in a male-dominated culture. One day, while operating on a young woman in a critical condition, something goes gravely wrong. A Mistake is a compelling story of human fallibility, and the dangerous hunger for black and white answers in a world of exponential complication and nuance.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The method actors : a novel / Shuker, R. Carl
“The disappearance of a young military historian leads his sister to Japan, where, among the hedonistic expatriate set of which he was a part, she uncovers evidence that her brother may have discovered evidence of war crimes committed by the Japanese during World War II. A first novel. Original. The Method Actors traces the disappearance of a young, gifted military historian named Michael Edwards from his desk in Tokyo and his sister Meredith’s return to the city in search of him. Michael’s research into international war crimes trials will take his sister through four hundred years of history, myth and propaganda, love and infidelity, religious transport and hallucination.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The lazy boys : a novel / Shuker, R. Carl
“Carl Shuker’s protagonist, Richard Sauer, heads off to college for no reason other than to escape the stultifying normalcy of his middle-class family in Timaru, New Zealand. He may appear ordinary in his aimlessness, mangling his way through his first year in college, but his bonging and banging, his anger and rage, take a brutal turn at an out-of-control dorm party which lands Richey in front of the disciplinary committee with a sexual harassment charge. Dropping out of school before he’s thrown out, Richey and his housemates Matt, Nick, and Ursula begin a freefall that forces Richey to face his most destructive desires.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Overdrive cover Anti Lebanon, Carl Shuker (ebook)
“It is Arab Spring and the fate of the Christians of the Middle East is uncertain. The many Christians of Lebanon are walking a knife-edge, their very survival in their ancestral refuge in doubt, as the Lebanese government becomes Hezbollah-dominated, while Syria convulses with warring religious factions. Anti Lebanon is a cross-genre political thriller and horror story embedded within these recent events, featuring a multiethnic Christian family living out the lingering after-effects of Lebanon’s civil war as it struggles to deal with its phantoms, its ghosts, and its vampires. (Adapted fromOverdrive description)

Aukati / Arathimos, Michalia
“Alexia is a law student escaping the Greek family that stifles her, and Isaiah is a young Maori returning home to find the family he’s lost. Cut loose from their own cultures, they have volunteered to help Isaiah’s Taranaki iwi get rid of the fracking that’s devastating their land and water. The deeper Alexia and Isaiah go into the fight, the closer they get to understanding the different worlds they inhabit. But when a protest march becomes violent a boundary is crossed, and they need to decide where they stand and fast. It’s clear the police have been tipped off, and the activists gathered at the marae suspect they’re being watched or, worse, there is an informant in the group. Can Alexia and Isaiah be trusted? And more – can they trust themselves?” (Catalogue)

I am a human being / Nieuwland, Jackson
“Poet Jackson Nieuwland  first published collection is a beautiful, complex and surreal body  of work. The poems within are very intimate and display vulnerability, and fragility . Working with the concept that no single  word can adequately defines us. The multiplicity of who we are and what we have the potential to become is explored in a sequence of  poems such as I am an egg, I am a tree, I am a beaver, I am a bear, I am a bottomless pit etc. The works within are delicately accompanied by Steph Maree’s line drawings.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Four writers writing about Newtown

Rachel Kerr author of Victory Park, Carl Shuker author of A Mistake and Michalia Arathimos author of Aukati in conversation with Mary McCallum about setting their fiction in Newtown.

With Jackson Nieuwland reading their poem from their collection I am a human being about working at Newtown Library.

Join us to hear these four esteemed authors all writing about Newtown talking about their work. All with very different voices and all with very different things to say. Yet all of the highest calibre this event this bound to be entertaining and stimulating and to make it even more complete we will be staging it at Newtown Library.


Friday, December 4   |   6pm   |   Newtown Library


The authors involved are…

Rachel Kerr has exploded onto the New Zealand literary scene with her debut novel Victory Park. About a single mother living on a block of flats in a fictionalised Newtown. Her life is humdrum until the mysterious Bridget moves into the flats, bringing with her unexpected friendship, glamour and wild dreams.

Carl Shuker’s A Mistake. When an operation what goes wrong, in a hospital based on Wellington Regional Hospital in Newtown a young woman dies, who is culpable and who is to blame. The moral and ethical repercussions of this tragic event are explored in this masterful work which was shortlisted for the Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize 2020.

Michalia Arathimos’s Aukati begins with two people arriving at a marae to protest fracking at a nearby farm. Family, political protest and culture intersect in this thoughtful, elegant, moving, and economically written novel. Michalia Arathimos describes herself as a Greek-New Zealander she currently is the Writer in Residence at Randell Cottage and will hold the Grimshaw Sargeson Fellowship in 2021.

Poet Jackson Nieuwland has been a busy person not only releasing their first beautiful, complex and surreal collection of poetry I am a Human Being, but also opening Food Court Books in Newtown and is also in the process of launching their own publishing house. This promises to be an unmissable event and all are very welcome.

Victory Park / Kerr, Rachel
“Kara lives in Victory Park council flats with her young son, just making a living by minding other people’s kids – her nightly smoke on the fire escape the only time she can drop her guard and imagine something better. But the truth is life is threadbare and unpromising until the mysterious Bridget moves in to the flats. The wife of a disgraced Ponzi schemer she brings with her glamour and wild dreams and an unexpected friendship. Drawn in, Kara forgets for a moment who she’s there to protect.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

A mistake / Shuker, R. Carl
“Elizabeth Taylor is a surgeon at a city hospital, a gifted, driven and rare woman excelling in a male-dominated culture. One day, while operating on a young woman in a critical condition, something goes gravely wrong. A Mistake is a compelling story of human fallibility, and the dangerous hunger for black and white answers in a world of exponential complication and nuance.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

The method actors : a novel / Shuker, R. Carl
“The Method Actors traces the disappearance of a young, gifted military historian named Michael Edwards from his desk in Tokyo and his sister Meredith’s return to the city in search of him. Michael’s research into international war crimes trials will take his sister through four hundred years of history, myth and propaganda, love and infidelity, religious transport and hallucination.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

The lazy boys : a novel / Shuker, R. Carl
“Carl Shuker’s protagonist, Richard Sauer, heads off to college for no reason other than to escape the stultifying normalcy of his middle-class family in Timaru, New Zealand. He may appear ordinary in his aimlessness, mangling his way through his first year in college, but his bonging and banging, his anger and rage, take a brutal turn at an out-of-control dorm party which lands Richey in front of the disciplinary committee with a sexual harassment charge. Dropping out of school before he’s thrown out, Richey and his housemates Matt, Nick, and Ursula begin a freefall that forces Richey to face his most destructive desires.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

Overdrive cover Anti Lebanon, Carl Shuker (ebook)
“It is Arab Spring and the fate of the Christians of the Middle East is uncertain. The many Christians of Lebanon are walking a knife-edge, their very survival in their ancestral refuge in doubt, as the Lebanese government becomes Hezbollah-dominated, while Syria convulses with warring religious factions. Anti Lebanon is a cross-genre political thriller and horror story embedded within these recent events, featuring a multiethnic Christian family living out the lingering after-effects of Lebanon’s civil war as it struggles to deal with its phantoms, its ghosts, and its vampires. (Adapted fromOverdrive description)

Aukati / Arathimos, Michalia
“Alexia is a law student escaping the Greek family that stifles her, and Isaiah is a young Maori returning home to find the family he’s lost. Cut loose from their own cultures, they have volunteered to help Isaiah’s Taranaki iwi get rid of the fracking that’s devastating their land and water. The deeper Alexia and Isaiah go into the fight, the closer they get to understanding the different worlds they inhabit. But when a protest march becomes violent a boundary is crossed, and they need to decide where they stand and fast. It’s clear the police have been tipped off, and the activists gathered at the marae suspect they’re being watched or, worse, there is an informant in the group. Can Alexia and Isaiah be trusted? And more – can they trust themselves?” (Catalogue)

I am a human being / Nieuwland, Jackson
“Poet Jackson Nieuwland  first published collection is a beautiful, complex and surreal body  of work. The poems within are very intimate and display vulnerability, and fragility . Working with the concept that no single  word can adequately defines us. The multiplicity of who we are and what we have the potential to become is explored in a sequence of  poems such as I am an egg, I am a tree, I am a beaver, I am a bear, I am a bottomless pit etc. The works within are delicately accompanied by Steph Maree’s line drawings.” ( Adapted from Catalogue)

New Zines!

The last Zinefest in November was the biggest one to be held in Wellington so far. In addition to opening night festivities, the marketplace ran over two days at Te Auaha, with different stallholders on both days.

Zinefests in Wellington are normally held twice a year, and Wellington City Libraries always attends if possible. Most of our lending zine collection is bought at the marketplace. So where can you find zines now that the Central Library is closed? Our new zines are being added to Newtown Library’s collection. A collection has been based there for a while now, and Newtown is now the main source of lending zines for Wellington Library borrowers. So pop-in to Newtown to browse and borrow!

Here are some selected highlights from the November Wellington Zinefest, which will be available on Newtown Library’s shelves:

“Overcommunicate” is self-described as a “magazine for LGBTQIA+ women, non-binary folk, and friends.” Written by a variety of contributors, it is a collection of art, writing, and poetry. We have Issues 1 and 2 available to borrow.

The Crispin series. This is a set of four little zines about Crispin, a yellow, smiley-faced blob who goes on a series of adventures including: “Crispin goes fishing”, “Crispin has a series of close shaves”, “Crispin in Monday’s child”, and the “Beginners guide to drawing Crispin.” Each one is hand-coloured by the artist.

Three new zines by Willow Scarlett. Artist, writer, and learner of Latin, Scarlett has created three beautifully produced zines that combine art and writing. Their first, “Gutter Flowers volume 1” is an A5 sized, stitch-bound, black-matte covered zine with raised gold lettering. Inside are full-colour illustrations with more raised, textured lettering. The other two are A6 in size: “blood stained stairs”, and “death and beautiful illusions.” Both are short horror stories printed on thick red paper, and stitched together with gold thread.

Our final new zine was not bought at the zinefest, but was sent to us as a donation from Newtown School. It is called “Kids Write: A journal publishing awesome authors and artists.” We have Issue 1, which was produced in Term 3 of 2019. It features illustrations and writing from children aged 5 – 11.

Free Film Screenings in August

Syndetics book coverFor August 2016, join us at the Central Library for a ‘laugh in the dark’ with a selection of fantastic comedies each Thursday.

Sessions begin at 6pm on the Ground Floor of the Central Library. These screenings are free to attend. To avoid disappointment reserve your seat by telephoning 801-4068 during library opening hours.

We will now also be hosting family friendly film screenings at Newtown library on the first Friday of each month! Phone (04) 389 2830 to book those, and for more details about the upcoming film, screening on Friday 5th August.

Remember: We have special permission to screen these films for free in public libraries as long as we don’t advertise the film name online (plus other conditions). Please call the information desk (801-4068) to get more details.
Note: reservations not taken up by the starting time at 6pm may be reallocated to customers waiting, as numbers are limited.

Friday Movie Nights at Newtown

Family Watching TV TogetherOn the first Friday of each month we are screening family friendly feature films from the library’s collection at Newtown Library.

Sessions begin at 6pm in the YA area/tent at the library. These screenings are free to attend. The next session is tonight, on Friday 1 July.

We have special permission to screen these films for free in public libraries as long as we don’t advertise the film name online. Please call Newtown Library (389-2830) during library opening hours to get more details about the film screenings and reserve your seat.

Newtown Library re-opens for business

Newtown library is opening its doors on Monday 31 August after 3 months of renovations. Visitors will experience a fresh new library including new energy efficient lighting, and improved ventilation.

Councillor Sarah Free, Portfolio leader for Community Facilities says, “Newtown library is one of our busiest so it’s great that we’ve been able to upgrade it with new heating, lighting, ventilation, a new paint job and new skylights.

The work took a bit longer than anticipated and we would like to thank everyone for their patience. In the meantime we had shuttle buses to the Kilbirnie Library and extra services there, but there’s nothing like having your own local library back”.

South Wellington City Councillor Paul Eagle, says, “Newtown Library is a magical place – it’s the window to the world for many in our community. I’ve been eagerly awaiting the doors of my favourite library to re-open – the makeover together with the positive service from our local librarians sets it apart from other branch libraries in the city.”

As well as a new look library there will be new books on display for customers to enjoy. As part of the reopening, overdue fees for items due at Newtown library while it was closed will be waived. For early visitors on opening day, celebration cake will be on offer.

Newtown Library will now be reopening on 7 September 2015

Newtown LibraryThe internal re-paint was completed in June as planned. The scheduled replacement of skylights, lights, heating and ventilation systems is now underway, but in order to complete the work to quality expectations the timeframe has been extended to the 7th of September.

All items that were issued until 22 July can be returned through the after hour slots at Newtown Library on the 23, 24 and 25 of July,
or at any other Wellington City Library with no return fee charged.

Wellington City Libraries will continue to provide these services for our Newtown Library customers during this time:

  • Free shuttle between Newtown and Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) libraries Monday to Friday
  • Reserves available for collection from Smart Newtown
  • Return fees waived for books returned to other libraries
  • More seating and newspapers available at Ruth Gotlieb Library (Kilbirnie).
  • Keeping you updated about the project through the WCC call centre, the Newtown branch webpage, Facebook and Twitter.
  • Access to our 24/7 online services

If you have any questions or require further information about the closure please contact Andrea Thomas or Sharon Macintyre by phone 830-1255 or email enquiries@wcl.govt.nz

Newtown & Karori libraries will be temporarily closed for maintenance

Newtown

Newtown Library will be temporarily closed for scheduled maintenance and upgrades.

Newtown library will be closed from 13th May 2015 until 22nd July 2015 inclusive.

Newtown Library was built approximately 25 years ago and requires scheduled maintenance and upgrades. Contractors will be replacing the skylights, installing heating systems, ventilation systems and efficient lighting. Interior painting and replacing vinyl will be done at the same time.

Newtown libraryWellington City Libraries are providing these services for our Newtown Library customers during this time:

  • Free shuttle between Newtown and Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) libraries Monday to Friday
  • Reserves available for collection from Smart Newtown
  • Issue periods extended for the duration of the closure
  • Return fees waived for books returned to other libraries
  • More seating and newspapers available at Ruth Gotlieb Library (Kilbirnie)
  • Access to our 24/7 online services

We encourage you to “stock up” from May 1st to take advantage of the extended loan period. You can stay updated about the project through updates to this page, the WCC call centre (499 4444), and our Facebook and Twitter updates.

If you have any questions or require further information about the closure please contact Andrea Thomas or Sharon Macintyre by phoning 830 1255 or emailing enquiries@wcl.govt.nz.

Karori

Karori Library is 10 years old this year and needs internal repainting and some maintenance. For the health and safety of staff and customers it is necessary to close the library.

Karori Library will be closed from Saturday 9 May – Monday 25 May inclusive.

Need-to-know information:

  • Issues will be unavailable. We encourage you to visit and stock up on library items beforehand and take advantage of our extended loan period offer (see below). Or visit any of our other branch libraries at any time.
  • Returns will be unavailable. All items will be issued until well after the re-opening to ensure no items are due during the closure. Returns can be made at any of the other libraries and the usual return fee waived.
  • Extra pre-school storytime sessions will be run at Cummings Park Library, Ngaio. These will be on Monday, Wednesday and Thursdays at 10.30am. That site also offers a Baby Rock and Rhyme session at 10.30 on Tuesdays.
  • Café remains open for business.

Wellington City Libraries are providing these services for our Karori Library customers during this time:

  • Online Library services are available 24/7 at wcl.govt.nz
  • Newspapers will be delivered to Karori Community Centre (KCC) – this includes the Dominion Post, NZ Herald and Sunday Star Times.
  • Free wifi and internet is offered at KCC – enquire with the centre on availability.
  • A Library staff member will be available at Karori Recreation Centre (KRC) for enquiries and assistance 9.30am – 6pm Monday to Friday, and 9.30am – 4pm Saturday.
  • Reserves can be collected from KRC and will be held longer than usual.

For further information or to discuss any aspect of the project, please contact Karl Gaskin or Jill Spackman by phoning 476 8413 or emailing enquiries@wcl.govt.nz.

Samoan Language Week

starts Wednesday 1 June! The Samoan language is the third most commonly spoken language in New Zealand after English and Maori. The week is an opportunity to celebrate the language and the culture of Samoan New Zealanders. The theme this year is Samoa Ola – Samoa Active, focusing on language, sport and healthy living and linking to the visit of Manu Samoa to New Zealand for the Rugby World Cup.

More information about the weeklong celebrations you can find here:
http://www.hrc.co.nz/race-relations/samoan-language-week/

Wellington City Libraries has many resources about Samoan culture. Here are some recent purchases:

Samoan tattooing, or tatau is an ancient Polynesian art tradition and rite of passage that reaches its most powerful expression in the full body male tattoo, the pe’a. Building on the internationally touring exhibition Tatau, this extraordinary series of images by leading photographer Mark Adams documents the story of tatau in the Pacific and its remarkable globalisation.

Tusi`upu Sāmoa is a long-awaited dictionary of Sāmoan, the first comprehensive work of its sort written by a Sāmoan, papaāli`i Dr Semisi Ma`ia`i. Volume One contains the Sāmoan to English text. Volume Two contains the English to Sāmoan text.

This picture book is the story of Talia who is visiting her relatives in Samoa for the very first time!