Art miles at Spreydon Library

Art Miles at Spreydon

Our YA area here at Spreydon Library is looking much brighter after Kelly and I put up our Art Miles banner (made by the Hindi School).

The banner came with an explanation of what the banner is about:

Art Miles is an international project based on the premise that in painting, people come together regardless of language or culture.

To date, around half a million people have taken part in this project, in 125 countries.

This banner is one of 20 banners painted in Canterbury in contribution to this international movement  … The banners were painted in the lead-up to the Summerz End Youth Fest, held on 5 April 2014. In keeping with the festival’s vision to create a inclusive space for all youth in Canterbury, the theme for the Art Miles banners was “This is who I am; this is who we are.”

Thank you Donna Tartt

Cover of The GoldfinchI have just finished reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. The story begins in Amsterdam with Theo, sick with a fever and locking himself in his hotel room, trying to work how his life could have turned out for the better – if indeed it could have. His life quickly moves back to New York where Theo is on the way to the museum with his mother to view her favourite painting and walks into a day that changes his life forever.

I was with Theo that fateful day and was compelled to remain with him until the end of his story. I was drawn to the array of colourful and memorable characters/rogues that Theo collides with during his life. I was fascinated by the different worlds of art, furniture restoration, antiques, drugs, and gambling. I was entranced by the rich detailed language and the suspenseful storylines, re-reading passages and thinking over the vividly described scenes. This was not an easy read with its themes of loss, obsession, and identity, however it quickly became a compulsive read and was difficult to put down.

I knew I was in the presence of a masterful writer …

A wilderness of gilt, gleaming in the slant from the dust-furred windows: gilded cupids, gilded commodes and torchieres, and – undercutting the old-wood smell – the reek of turpentine, oil, paint, and varnish. I followed him through the workshop along a path swept with sawdust, past pegboard and tools, dismembered chairs and claw-foot tables sprawled with their legs in the air. Though he was a big man he was graceful, a “floater”, my mother would have called him, something effortless and gliding in the way he carried himself. With my eyes on the heels of his slippered feet, I followed him up some narrow stairs and into a dim room, richly carpeted, where black urns stood on pedestals and tasselled draperies were drawn against the sun.

I loved it all. For me this was a pin prick book, it heightened my senses and made me feel more alive. Thank you Donna Tartt.

John Psathas – Rhythm Spike – free online New Zealand music

Our next offering for New Zealand Music Month is  John Psathas – Rhythm Spike, the winner of Best Classical Album in the 2000 NZ Music Awards.

Psathas is New Zealand’s most internationally performed composer. His music draws on classical, jazz and rock traditions and is performed by artists from a variety of disciplines.. Psathas composed the music for the opening of the 2004 Olympic Games.

Jack Body writes:

… his music conveys an almost palpable passion – every work has an urgent sense of having to have been written. At times I’m swept onto a frantic roller-coaster ride taken to a height of exhilaration close to terror. But John Psathas is also capable of intense poetic introspection. He speaks with a voice that is his and his alone.

This album (and over 52,000 more) is available online for free from anywhere with your library card number and PIN.

For New Zealand Music Month we are featuring a daily dose of free online New Zealand music from Naxos Music Library and the Source.