eMagazines for your weekend – RBDigital Magazines

Here is a baker’s dozen of titles hot off the press from RBDigital Magazines. Perfect for a spot of weekend reading – on your laptop, desktop, phone, tablet …:

Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover


  1. Apple Magazine
  2. Vanity Fair
  3. Big League
  4. Evo
  5. Bon Appetit
  6. British Vogue
  7. New Zealand Listener
  8. Woman’s Day
  9. North and South
  10. Q
  11. Hello!
  12. Grazia
  13. Philosophy now

Harry Giles: Doer of Things (WORD Christchurch event, Tues 13 March 7.30pm at Space Academy)

I must admit to some trepidation about reporting on a Poetry Reading. How does one describe a Poetry Reading to those that weren’t there? Even one by a flamboyant Scottish poet who has travelled halfway across the world.

Harry Josephine Giles originally came from the Orkney Islands but they did not elaborate from which island other than to tell us that their island had 700 people and six churches of various denominations. Obviously, a small island northeast of Scotland was never going to contain nor satisfy a restless, creative spirit like Harry’s so they headed for the big city and now reside in Edinburgh.

I vacillated on whether I should take notes, but I thought that would be a buzz kill when I was trying to listen and enjoy the poetry in the moment.

Harry started off reading some poems in English and then went on to read some in Scots. If you want to see what Scots poetry looks like, check out Whit tae write nou?

I profess ignorance and I have no excuse since I am descended from Scots, but I was unaware that three languages were spoken in Scotland as Harry enlightened us. I knew they spoke English (the language of their colonisers) and Scots Gaelic (related to the other Celtic dialects of Ireland, Wales, Cornwall and Brittany), but I hadn’t considered Scots as a separate language. I’d thought of it as a variation of English. But Harry put us straight, explaining that Scots has those Norse origins that English shares.

Harry kindly read their Scots versions of poems then followed with the English translation, so to speak.

Although tired after their whirlwind tour of Aotearoa (nine gigs in seven days in New Plymouth and Wellington), Harry gave an energetic performance. It was easy to see that Harry works in the performance and theatre arenas because they enlivened their poetry with modulations of their voice and gestures. Harry has a beguiling shyness that peeps out from time to time.

Harry read a small series of poems in which they had engendered their fears and anxieties through the persona of a female military drone. You can hear some of the sequence on Soundcloud.

Harry was introduced by Ray Shipley who is a Christchurch-based poet, comedian, youth worker and founder of the Faultline Poetry Collective. Ray made an able MC and general crowd-exciter, but Harry had the audience engaged from their first poem and many of us were sad to bid Harry farewell after only an hour and a half.

More Harry Giles

New view for tukutuku

Kaokao (variation 2), currently on loan to Christchurch Art Gallery

If you happen to visit the Christchurch Art Gallery in the next few months you’ll see a piece of Christchurch City Libraries on display.

Ten of the library’s tukutuku panels are on temporary loan as part of an exhibition put together by assistant curator Nathan Pohio called ‘Moroki‘. This word refers to something with an ongoing nature and expresses continuity. In this instance the focus is on historic and contemporary Māori artworks that offer insight into the relationships between Māori art and architecture, and is part of a wider exhibition highlighting 19th and 20th century New Zealand art currently on display at the art gallery.

This is not the first time the tukutuku panels have had a temporary change of home.

Created in 2001 as part of a community art project led by Ngā Puna Waihanga, 19 tukutuku panels were installed in Ngā Pounamu Māori, the Māori resource area on the 2nd floor of the Central Library in 2002. 

After the library building was damaged in the 2011 Christchurch earthquakes the panels were removed and eventually distributed to a number of libraries around the network. The tukutuku panels currently on loan to the art gallery were previously housed at the Linwood and Aranui libraries. When Tūranga, the new central library building currently under construction in Cathedral Square, opens the tukutuku panels will again be brought together and displayed with the Māori collection.

Tukutuku panels
Tukutuku panels on display in Ngā Pounamu Māori, Central Library, 26 July 2002. Flickr CE-Refurb-MaoriPanels

The ten tukutuku panels currently on display at the art gallery sit across from paintings of Māori architecture and carvings, and the colours, shapes and designs on the panels really have an opportunity to shine when placed alongside other artworks.

If you want to know more about how, why and by whom the library’s tukutuku panels were created check out our Puāwaitanga o te Ringa – Fruits of our busy hands resource for photos of the panels along with explanations of the different designs and their meanings.

Victoria Square reopens – Friday 9 March 2018

Today Victoria Square has reopened. It has been closed for a year, having a revamp and repairs.

What’s new:

  • New pieces of art have been added including Ngā Whāriki Manaaki – Woven mats of welcome, and a Literary Trail (series of text sculptures).
  • The Bowker Fountain will be working again and will put on a water and light display.

Here’s what Victoria Square looked like this morning:

Find out more about Victoria Square

Podcast – Art and social responsibility

Speak Up Kōrerotia logoChristchurch City Libraries blog hosts a series of regular podcasts from specialist human rights radio show Speak up – Kōrerotia. This show is created by Sally Carlton.

The role of art and artists in raising awareness of social and political issues – show recorded live at Christchurch’s CoCA (Centre of Contemporary Art) with artist Ruth Watson (whose exhibition Geophagy prompted the topic), art curator Jennifer Shields, socialist feminist Sionainn Byrnes and environmental activist Alice Ridley of Saikuru.

Topics covered include:

  • Setting the scene: The Geophagy exhibition
  • What is and who holds social responsibility?
  • Limits to the influence of art – art within the gallery or in the public sphere
  • Corporations and sponsoring art
  • How can art encourage social responsibility?

Transcript – Art and social responsibility

Find out more in our collection

Cover of The conscience economy: How A Mass Movement for Good Is Great for Business Cover of The responsibility revolution: How the Next Generation of Businesses Will Win Cover of Slow fashion: Aesthetics Meets Ethics Cover of Ethics and the Consumer Cover of Clothing poverty Cover of Dying for a bargain Ecopreneuring Cover of Sustainability made simple

More about Speak up – Kōrerotia

The show is also available on the following platforms:

Canterbury Japan Day 2018

Canterbury Japan Day is an annual event organised by The Japanese Society of Canterbury with the aim of sharing authentic Japanese culture with Cantabrians. In 2018 it will take place from 9.30am to 4.30pm on Sunday 4 March at Riccarton Park, 165 Racecourse Road.

The theme this year is the Japanese Summer. The venue will be filled with decorations relating to Tanabata – The Summer Star Festival. There will be stalls, indoor events, an anime cosplay cafe and outdoor events.

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The history of Canterbury Japan Day

The inaugural Canterbury Japan Day was held on 11 March 2012 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Japanese Society of Canterbury and the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between New Zealand and Japan. It also marked the anniversary of the 2011 East Japan earthquake and tsunami.

Canterbury Japan Day
Canterbury Japan Day, Flickr CCL-2012-03-11-CanterburyJapanDay-March-2012 DSC_0569.JPG



Cool stuff from the selectors: Wunderkammer and Generation Wealth

Generation Wealth

9780714872124Lauren Greenfield began photographing in the early 1990s, capturing an era of conspicuous consumption. She was also there to document this rarefied world as it all cam tumbling down in the financial crash of 2008.  This is a hefty tome filled with brilliant photos and candid stories of wealth and decline.

Paper Time Machine

9781783523733Early photography lacked colour until skilled artisans began hand colouring prints.  In The Paper Time Machine, colouring is taken to a new level with each element in every photograph researched and colour checked for historical accuracy.  The photos are of the ordinary and the extraordinary brought to life and reconstructed with fascinating outcomes.


9781473664340I was in the bathroom shaving. Suddenly, unexpectedly, I saw the bathroom door move. I acted without even thinking – it was my regiment training kicking in – and thumped the door back with my heel as hard as I could.  It was my wife. The sharp end of the door, and the force of my kick split her face right open.  She’s never let me forget it.

Indeed … this rather horrible incident sums up the book, no one – and I mean no one – gets in the way of this guy.

Chris Ryan will show you how to be safe on an aircraft, mass terror incident, in the car, on the street and hopefully in your own house (with sisterly nod to Chris Ryan’s wife).

Wunderkammer: An Exotic Journey Through Time

9789401442725German for A Cabinet of Curiosities, Wunderkammer are showing up everywhere apparently, and could be the “next big thing”. Design workshops, expos, and interior design stores are bringing back the memories of the tradition of exotica –  material brought back by explorers from all over the world.  Think shells, stuffed animals, wild art and exotic varieties of well…everything!

Summer Holiday Activities

All ages are welcome at these activities. sessions are FREE, and they don’t require bookings (unless mentioned otherwise)! Join in from Tuesday 9 January 2018.

No-Sew Cushion Creation

Using cut material and a number of knots – create a super-cute ‘no sew’ cushion. Use it at home, or give it as a present!
Find out where and when these sessions are on: No-Sew Cushion Creation

Make a Pin Wheel Fan

Create a spinning fan to cool you off this summer by using simple materials like straws, paper, scissors, and pins.
Find out where and when these sessions are on: Make a Pin Wheel Fan

Summer Reading Photo Booth

Love reading and taking photos? Bring along your own device and take pics of yourself in our summer-themed photo booth. All ages welcome.
Find out where and when these sessions are on: Summer Reading Photo Booth

3D Printing Demo

Drop in and have a look at how 3D printing works.
Find out where and when these sessions are on: 3D Printing Demo


Help your Bee-Bots find their way around a map using entry-level coding.
Find out where and when these sessions are on: Bee-Bots

Create a Lion Note Holder

Use a special quilling tool and lots of bright craft materials to create your own super cute lion note holder. Library staff will help you with your creation. All craft material sourced from the MAKE Company. Free, but bookings are essential – phone 9417923.  For ages 5 to 12 years.
Find out where and when these sessions are on: Create a Lion Note Holder

Treasure in the Libraries

Come along to a taonga (treasure) themed school holiday session and discover what cool things are hidden in your library. Enjoy storytelling, go on a scavenger hunt to discover treasuers, and then get crafty and make a treasure box to take home. Free, but bookings are essential – phone 9417923.  For ages 5 to 12 years.
Find out where and when these sessions are on: Treasure in the Libraries

SEE ALSO: Summertime Reading Club

On until Friday 19 January 2018!


Christmas eMagazines on RBDigital 2017

Get your Christmas inspiration online with eMagazines. Check out the titles on RBDigital.

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Ultra Violet to Aubergine: Reading purple

Last week Pantone announced their colour of the year for 2018* and fans of purple will be happy. Ultra Violet, as it is being called, is a “…blue-based purple that takes our awareness and potential to a higher level”.

While this might sound a bit of a big ask for a mauvey shade that might easily have been called “Nana’s lampshade”, it’s worth pointing out that when it comes to colours all sorts of meanings can be conveyed. Whether it makes sense to or not, we associate colours with feelings, ideas, and concepts and this fact is not lost on designers and artists.

I accidentally proved as much when I decided to scroll through books from this year, looking for those that were ahead of the field in featuring next year’s representative hue… and found patterns emerging.

Purple, on the whole, isn’t as popular a colour for book cover art as some others – black is very common in some genres, shades of blue turn up a lot, and if you like Romance fiction hopefully you’re not repelled by the colour pink…

In any event, here is how Ultra Violet groups itself in our catalogue, more or less.

Kids’ books

The cover art for kids’ books, as it is with their clothing, decor and other possessions, is a bit more exuberant with the use of colour than you find with the corresponding versions aimed at adults. Because time and age hasn’t made them love neutrals yet, I guess.

Graphic novels

Visual by their nature, it’s not a tremendous surprise that graphic novels would make good use of colour in the covers.

Cover of World trigger Cover of Rezero Cover of Spinning Cover of Magi Cover of Angel Catbird Cover of Black butler

Young Adult

Did you used to be a kid a little while ago? Then you might still be interested in some of those colours you used to see a lot of during childhood.

Cover of Shadowhouse Fall Cover of Firsts Cover of Jane unlimited Cover of Intensity Cover of Origins of evil Cover of Because of you Cover of The ends of the world Cover of Beasts made of night Cover of Ringer

Health, wellbeing and babies

Maybe it’s that purple is “gender neutral”? Maybe it’s that parts of your body sometimes go purple if they’re exerting themselves? Anyway, enjoy these kinder, gentler purple covers.

Cover of Myles textbook for midwives Cover of The Fibro manual Cover of Father therapy Cover of Cognitive behaviour therapy for OCD Cover of The Journey Cover of Baby names 2018 Cover of Resistance band workout Cover of The hormone myth Cover of the baby detective

Fiction (mostly mystery)

Here’s hoping they saved the purple for the cover, not the prose.

Cover of The Mitford murders Cover of Miraculous mysteries Cover of Shattered Cover of Barely legal Cover of Death in St Petersburg Cover of The locals Cover of The art of hiding Cover of Christmas in Icicle Falls

Tech, science and maths

Ha. Maybe purple really does “take our awareness and potential to a higher level”?

Cover of the night watchers Cover of Modern Java recipes Cover of Samsung Galaxy S8 Cover of Minecraft Cover of An introduction to linear algebra


There aren’t that many naturally purple foods but, oh yes, there’s an aubergine in the mix there.

Cover of The flexible vegetarian Cover of The fearless baker Cover of What am I supposed to eat? Cover of Dinner with Dickens

The last word in purple covers

And while it’s not a new title, you can’t write a blog post about book covers that are the colour purple without mentioning The color purple.

More on colours

If this is a topic that’s of interest to you we have a number of really interesting titles about the history of colourcolour in art history, and the science of colour.

*Amazingly, Ōrauwhata: Bishopdale Library and Community Centre has managed to use 2017’s Pantone colour, a bright green, with a splash of Ultra Violet, that proves that it was super “on trend” when it opened earlier this year.