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Rachael Morrison: Having a job as Senior Library Assistant at The Museum of Modern Art Library has been a big influence on my artistic practice. I use the library for research and inspiration, and as a site of investigation. In early 2010, I began the performance “Smelling the Books“, which consists of me smelling every book in the MoMA Library collection. This performance was recently highlighted in New York Magazine as one of the many reasons to love New York.
My performance started with the first call number in the Library of Congress classification system AC5.S4 1934, Sermons by Artists, and I will smell until I reach ZN3.R45, Bibliography of the History of Art. I document the performance in a ledger, recording the call number, title, and a description of the smell of each book. The goal of this personal olfactory exploration is to foster a discussion of the future of print media, the ways we read, methods of classification, and the way in which smell is entwined with memory.
Google has done search, email, documents, video, and now...
From the Alte Nationalgalerie of Berlin to the Metropolitan in New York to the National Gallery of London, Google has taken extremely high resolution images of some of the most famous artwork and put it online. View the artwork online and create your own gallery of favourites.
Learn more at the Google Art Project.
From Discovery News: Egyptians are bravely defending their cultural heritage, according to a statement from Ismail Serageldin, librarian of Alexandria and director of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina.
“The young people organized themselves into groups that directed traffic, protected neighborhoods and guarded public buildings of value such as the Egyptian Museum and the Library of Alexandria,” he said.
“The library is safe thanks to Egypt’s youth, whether they be the staff of the Library or the representatives of the demonstrators, who are joining us in guarding the building from potential vandals and looters,” Serageldin said.
However, the risk for cultural and archaeological sites remains high.
The West Bank, where the mortuary temples and the Valley of the Kings are located, is without any security, with only villagers trying to protect the sites.
“All the antiquities in the area have been protected by the locals all night, and nothing has been touched,” Mostafa Wazery, director of the Valley of Kings at Luxor, said.
UPDATE: Sun Jan 30, 14:40pm EST: In a faxed statement, Dr. Zahi Hawass, chief of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities, confirmed that a total of 13 cases were smashed at the Egyptian museum, adding that other sites are at risk at the moment.
The sweep of the new exhibition at the New York Public Library — “Three Faiths: Judaism, Christianity, Islam” — is stunning. It encompasses both an elaborately decorated book of 20th-century Coptic Christian readings and a modest 19th-century printing of the Gospels in the African language Grebo. There are Korans, with pages that shimmer with gold leaf and elegant calligraphy, and a 13th-century Pentateuch from Jerusalem, written in script used by Samaritans who traced their origins to the ancient Northern Kingdom of Israel.
The library’s Gutenberg Bible is here, as well as its 1611 King James translation. The first Koran published in English is shown, from 1649, along with fantastical images from 16th-century Turkish and Persian manuscripts in which Muhammad is pictured with other prophets, his face a blank white space in obeisance to the prohibition against his portrait.
Out of many, one. That could well be the motto of this ambitious exhibition. It focuses on “the three Abrahamic religions” — Judaism, Christianity and Islam. One of the main sponsors of “Three Faiths,” is the Coexist Foundation, whose aim is “to promote better understanding between Jews, Christians and Muslims.” (The other main donor is the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.) The display is on view through Feb. 27 at the New York Public Library.
From Fast Company Design:
The defining decorative element of a library has always been the books themselves. But now that institutions ranging from the University of Texas at Austin to ultra-traditional Cushing Academy are tossing their stacks in favor of digital collections, the question arises: How do you design a library when print books are no longer its core business?
At the University of Amsterdam, Dutch designers Studio Roelof Mulder and Bureau Ira Koers converted an existing 27,000-square-foot library into a massive study hall -- without any visible books -- to accommodate the 1,500 to 2,000 students who visit daily.
It’s a clever way to adapt to the post-print era. Libraries are expensive to operate. As books increasingly go digital, it makes sense for libraries to either downsize or, in the case of the University of Amsterdam, shift the focus of operations from books to people.
Check out the link for photos.
It's 1:16 p.m. and Nancy Fisch sits at her desk, making mysterious, hieroglyph-like squiggles on a copy of music.
With a freshly sharpened pencil in her left hand — her left-handedness is a sign of her brilliance, she jokes — she's transferring the squiggles from one copy of a score to another.
"Let's see how long it takes me," she says, savoring the challenge.
Fisch is the Joan Rivers of symphony librarians, a wise-cracking, Brooklyn-born, former French horn player with a talent for organization, a salty sense of humor and a tireless devotion to the orchestra. She works as the librarian of the San Diego Symphony.
The music in front of her: the viola part of Mozart's Flute Concerto No. 2 in D major. It's one of the works that flutist Sir James Galway — the most famous flutist on the planet — will perform next month in the concerts that open the San Diego Symphony's centennial season.
On her right is the music prepared by the symphony's principal violist, Che-Yen Chen. On her left is the copy that needs work. -- Read More
from the Baltimore Sun: Live near Baltimore and looking for something to do on Sunday? Get thee to the library...
Two years after Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, donated a $50,000 bust of Baltimore-born rocker Frank Zappa, the art will be installed Sunday at the Southeast Anchor Library during a daylong celebration. The audience, which organizers expect to number in the thousands, will include Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Zappa's widow, Gail, and one of his sons, Dweezil, who'll be performing with his tribute band, Zappa Plays Zappa. Rawlings-Blake will designate Sunday as Zappa Day, Gail Zappa will host a Q&A and the Creative Alliance at the Patterson will throw an afterparty.
When asked where the bust should be placed, Gail Zappa said she picked a library because her husband was a self-taught man who loved libraries.
"He always said, 'If you want to get laid, go to college. If you want to learn, go to a library,'" she said.
That's RANCH library... not branch library...
The LA Times Jacket Copy blogs on a new type of library currently under construction in Colorado, the Rocky Mountain Land Library, where visitors can learn not only from books, but also from the landscape.
Jeff Lee and his wife Ann Martin, longtime staff members at the famed Tattered Cover Bookstore in Denver, are behind the Rocky Mountain Land Library project. They were inspired by St. Deiniol's Library in North Wales to create a space for scholarship, contemplation, reading and writing, all in connection with the land itself.
Students at the University of Colorado Denver are currently working at the Buffalo Peaks Ranch, where a 20,000 + volume natural history library will be focused on the land and communities of the Rocky Mountains.