Joseph Wood Krutch : Herbal

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The cover may not look so inviting but inside this book are lovely woodcut reproductions from the 16th century.  I found this book in the Science stacks while examining some reference books for display. This book, by naturalist Joesph Wood Krutch looks at theories and discoveries of Herbalists from ancient times to present day. 100 plants and 6 creatures are detailed within.

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Herbalists were the fathers of medicine, pharmacology and horticulture and herein lies their many beliefs in text and illustration. Beautifully detailed are lettuce, mistletoe, juniper, nasturtiums, oats, and nutmeg along with many other plants. Included are illustrations of animals these herbalists felt could be used in treatment of disease. Herein lies a beautiful book.

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“The illustrations in this book are taken from the woodcuts in Pierandrea Mattioli’s huge folio volume, Commentaries on the Six Books of Dioscorides, issued in Prague in 1563 and Venice in 1565.  The work was first published in 1544 and appeared in some fifty editions in several languages, but all of those prior to 1563 had very much smaller plates.

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It is not known who made all of these monumental drawings and cut them in wood but most of them are generally attributed to Giorgio Liberale and Wolfgang Meyerpeck. However, on the Orange plate (page 113) the initials WS appear in the lower left corner, indicating that at least one other craftsman was involved.  In any case, these are certainly among the finest Herbal illustrations ever printed and are obviously, for the most part, based upon observation rather than being copies of copies, as was so often the practice up to that time.”
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You can view this book in the Science Division. It is a reference book and must be used in the library.

Expired Library Books

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We see many torn, shredded damaged books here at Central. Some fall apart on their own and others get damaged accidentally. Photographer, Kerry Mansfield, who claims not to be a a big reader, has photographed some of these discarded items that she buys from from other libraries. She may not be a big reader but she finds the molded and damaged book to be of interest enough to photograph it. Her photographs turn the abandoned book into an artifact complete with mold, mildew, tears, margin scribbles or broken bindings. The New York Times’ Lens Blog, has a slide show where you can view her photographs.

She started out photographing children’s books and books for teens, such as the well known Dr. Seuss book, “Hop on Pop,” and obscure ones like Evelyn Sibley Lampman’s “The Shy Stegosaurus of Cricket Creek.” She then turned her camera to books for adults like  Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird.” You see them on the Lens Blog.

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Sharon Core: Early American

Are the works of Sharon Core paintings or photographs? One
thing is certain, they are beautiful, and they are photographs. To write about
this new book of her photographs, called
Early
American
, one must understand the work of American artist Raphaelle Peale.

 
To create her realistic photographs, Sharon Core looked to American still-life painter Raphaelle Peale (1774-1825)
for inspiration. Core created these old-master styled photos with fruit she
grew, and with period porcelain and table settings she has collected to duplicate the
works of Peale. American painter Raphaelle Peale was the son of well-known
artist, Charles Wilson Peale. The elder Peale is best known for his painting,
The Artist in His Museum
 
The Artist in His Museum
 
 
The younger
Peale’s work was quite different from his father’s and his contemporaries.
Raphaelle was drawn to the quietness of the still life, he creates
almost an
austere or
melancholy atmosphere within his paintings. 
Peale avoided any suggestion of opulence as often
seen in 17th century Dutch still life. 
 
By the age of twenty-one, Raphaelle Peale was
recognized as America’s first and leading still life painter
and between
1812 and 1825 he painted over one hundred of them.
Most of Peale’s paintings are small in scale. He left a legacy of vibrant jewel like still
lifes depicting objects such as fruit, vegetables, and meat.
 
Peale’s paintings differ from his contemporaries with the strange
atmosphere he has created within them. His still lifes take on a strange
quality, they seem to take on the artist’s own body. American art scholar, Alexander
Nemerov has written extensively on the younger Peale and he seems to feel the
still life objects are imitations of Peale’s own body. Nemerov writes “Raphaelle’s
paintings simulate the artist’s own physical existence projected into the objects
of perception.”
 
Core’s photographs depict the younger Peale’s work down to
the last detail. It took her many long hours to track down the seeds necessary
to grow the heirloom species depicted in Peale’s work.  She had to hunt down through flea markets and
Ebay the Chinese porcelain and tableware prevalent in his canvases. 
Core has made note of the strange physical characteristics
in Peale’s work that scholar Nemerov has noted. 
Peale placed scars and bruising on his objects almost to make them extensions of his own body so Core has made sure we see slight
traces of life in these in inanimate objects, such as bruises, scars, and the rotting flesh of the food.  Some fruit seem to caress another piece through a “finger”
as seen in Lemons, (plate 18 in the book).  In the photograph
Apples in a Porcelain Basket (plate 6) we can almost see an “eye”
depicted as a rotting area on one of the apples. Brian Sholis who wrote the essay for the
book, Early American, says, “ they display the physical presence and variety of
human bodies.”
 
Core has paid close attention to the lighting Peale used and
how he placed his objects. From Peale’s paintings to Core’s photographs the
diffused lighting source is not known and the backdrops seem to disappear. Compositionally
Core has placed the objects exactly life Peale’s, objects are centered and tend
to be arranged in pyramids. Peale placed his objects very close to the viewer
so one could see all of their detail and Core has followed this compositional detail
as well.
As much as Core seems to depict Peale’s work down to the
last detail such as securing the exact same piece of porcelain Peals used she
has used his work as mimesis for her work. Peale used flat canvas and paint to give dimensionality
to his work while Core uses her camera to make the dimensional objects in front
of her to look like flat yet highly detailed reproductions of Peale’s work.



Read more:

PAINTERLY STRUGGLE: CONFLICT AND RESOLUTION WITHIN RAPHAELLE 
PEALE’S STILL LIFE PAINTINGS by Jason Frederick
The American Pioneer of Still Life by Edward J. Sozanski

 

Art Show: Sharon Core by Vicky Lowry

In Focus: Sharon Core 

Sharon Core Early American
Raphaelle Peale Still Lifes

 

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Fashion: From Jazz to Vogue’s Eye

Two new fashion books have arrived in the Art Division. One covers the glamorous world of 1920s fashion and the other celebrates the role the fashion editor has played at Vogue for 120 years.

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Vogue: The Editor’s Eye, retraces the work of Vogue’s legendary fashion editors including Pally Mellen, Babs Simpson, and Grace Coddington. These women collaborated with photographers, designers and stylists to create the fantasy world (for most of us anyway) of fashion. The book focuses on Vogue‘s dazzling archive of images that have had an impact on fashion, music, and culture. This book is lavish in its design and photographs. These editors had and still do have a vision when it comes to presenting the world of high fashion.

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The 1920s was one of the most stylish and influential fashion periods full of feathers, beads, sequins, and anything to over indulge in. After all this was a time of highly decorated Erte dresses and Art Deco.

Dressed to Kill: Jazz Age Fashion, brings us into that legendary elegant world of the 20s. This collection of photographs comes from Virginia, the most fabulous renowned antique clothing store in London. Many stylists, designers, models and museums use this store as their go to place for dresses, coats, and accessories from this time period. All are carefully preserved offering inspiration from this glittering time to all who are looking for the craftsmanship and ornamentation of this important fashion period. This is a lavish book, full of exquisite photographs. Indulge!

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Basketball Season @ the Library

Local basketball junkies have every reason to be excited about another great season for our area’s best college basketball team. The Syracuse Orangemen Men’s Basketball program is off to another great start this season– currently ranked 6th in the nation and now heading into Big East showdowns with the likes of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Georgetown Hoyas.
Your public library is also keeping pace with your sports reading demands. One of our newest books is titled, Color Him Orange: The Jim Boeheim Story, authored by award-winning sports columnist and best-selling local author Scott Pitoniak. Pitoniak identifies the sources of Basketball Hall of Fame coach’s fierce competitive drive and loyalty to Syracuse.
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The book also examines the people who shaped Boeheim as a person and a coach, the great players he has coached, and his incredible devotion to raising money in hopes of eradicating cancer—which claimed both of his parents’ lives, and has also victimized Boeheim himself.
Yep, that’s right. Two huge wins the last two games and now this team has catapulted to #3 in the nation. But are they really that good?

Despite the naysayers, the Syracuse Men’s Basketball Team has won 8 straight games and seems to be getting all the bounces and breaks. It has compiled a record of 18 wins against just one defeat (79-83 loss to Temple at MSG) as of Jan.22, 2013. And, the Orange has already won three conference road games, including a win at then-No.1 Louisville a few days ago. Impressive, don’t you think? Not so fast.

If you truly bleed Orange, you know your team’s loss to Temple was as horrendous as a loss can be—this is a team that was beaten by Canisius in its own gym.  And, the Orange has trailed in the second half of its last four games. It’s recent play caused head coach Jim Boeheim to publicly say, “If we don’t get better, we’re going to lose in the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament.” And that quote followed Syracuse’s dramatic 57-55 win over No. 21 Cincinnati last night in a highly publicized game. Kinda scary if you’re a Syracuse fan—but it’s something we have had to learn to live with all these years.

Speaking of all those great years of SU ball, why not revisit some of those glorious times by checking out our collection of Syracuse Basketball books here at the Central Library.

Anyway, it’s safe to say long-time SU fans have been down this road before and know perfectly well what Coach Beoheim is trying to do. The Hall of Fame coach has seen it all and done it all– been there and done that. No matter what you think, serious fans a have to ask the question whether he is just trying to motivate his guys or does he really believe that they have a long way to go before they get to the Final Four? (By the way, the Final Four is begins April 6 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.)

If we know Boeheim like we do, he is going to keep his players, fans and the media guessing to the last possible minute of the last game day of this season. And, all we can do for now is fasten our seatbelts and hope it’s not that bumpy of a ride.

Other basketball titles of interest include:
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What’s New in Graphic Novels for the start of 2013

Lots of great new additions to our graphic novel collection for the start of the New Year. Here’s what’s new and hot!

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Queer cartooning encompasses some of the best and most interesting comics of the last four decades, with creators tackling complex issues of identity and a changing society with intelligence, humor and imagination. This groundbreaking new collection celebrates a vibrant artistic underground by gathering together a collection of excellent stories that can be enjoyed by everyone. Among the stellar list of contributors to No Straight Lines is Alison Bechdel, Howard Cruse, Ralf Koenig, Robert Kirby, Wojnarowicz and Dan Savage.

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When confronted with his girlfriend’s request that they have a child together, Samuel fled that relationship. But now, a year later, when he receives a letter from Alice announcing she is expecting a baby, old emotions flare up and he embarks on a long journey to see Alice again – to re-open or perhaps close forever that important chapter of his life. The Crackle of the Frost is what he sees, hears, experiences and learns during that journey.

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A richly-illustrated graphic novel adaptation of Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire, told through the eyes of the vampire Claudia, who was just a little girl when she was turned by the vampire Lestat. Though she spends many years of happiness with her two vampire fathers, she gradually grows discontent with their insistence upon treating her like a little girl, even though she has lived as long as any mortal man…and her lust to kill is certainly no less than theirs…

Gary Panter began imagining Dal Tokyo, a future Mars that is terraformed by Texan and Japanese workers, as far back as 1972, appropriating a friend’s idea about cultural and temporal collision (The Dal is short for Dallas).

Wallace Wood applied his preternaturally lush brushwork to over two dozen stories in the thematically overlapping (“dreadful things happen to people, both innocent and guilty”) horror, crime, and suspense genres. Came the Dawn is the subject of one of the two premiere releases in Fantagraphics’ highly-anticipated new EC reprint line.

The Voyeurs is a real-time memoir of a turbulent five years in the life of renowned cartoonist, diarist, and filmmaker Gabrielle Bell. It collects episodes from her award-winning series Lucky, in which she travels to Tokyo, Paris, the South of France, and all over the United States, but remains anchored by her beloved Brooklyn, where sidekick Tony provides ongoing insight, offbeat humor, and enduring friendship.

The Best American Comics 2012 FEATURING Charles Burns, Chester Brown, Joyce Farmer, Chris Ware, Gary Panter, Sergio Aragonés, Christoph Niemann, Adrian Tomine, Sarah Varon, and others.

From the Underground era to THE SIMPSONS comic book to her graphic novel THE BIG SKINNY, Carol Lay has been writing and drawing amazing stories for years. Her Story Minute strip, which gained a devoted following while appearing on Salon.com, is collected here for the first time in Illiterature.

Andy’s life is going nowhere, fast. He left art school with his career all worked out ahead of time, but … to say it didn’t work out is the understatement of the century. Unemployed and living with his overbearing parents, Andy struggles to keep sight of the lofty goals that once drove him. The first volume of a series, Tune is a science fiction comedy, but it’s also a smart and affectionate examination of human nature.

“Ah Pook” was the legendary unpublished collaboration between Burroughs and McNeil that never fully came together. This book, which only contains the art from McNeil, is part of the planned project in a two-book set.

Building Stories imagines the inhabitants of a three-story Chicago apartment building: a 30-something woman who has yet to find someone with whom to spend the rest of her life; a couple, possibly married, who wonder if they can bear each others company another minute; and the building’s landlady, an elderly woman who has lived alone for decades.

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To lure pretty Epily, little chick Abelard sees only one solution: to catch the moon for her. So off he goes to America, the country that invented flying machines. Armed with his banjo and his proverb-sharing hat, he launches out on the country roads, where he meets Gaston, a grumpy bear with whom he shares his plan. As opposed to dreamer Abelard, Gaston has his feet firmly planted on the ground. This humorous comic, where the absurd becomes poetry, explores philosophical ideas through a simple, fanciful story.

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Scott Campbell’s acclaimed Great Showdowns series, showing strangely good- natured confrontations between his favorite movie characters, finally gets the book collection fans have been demanding!

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It’s all here in the second edition of Faster than a speeding bullet: The rise of the Graphic Novel–the must-reads, the newest, hottest creators, and what to look for in the future of this exciting new medium.

Shoes

Why have shoes and shoe styles captivated us for thousands of years? A totally utilitarian part of clothing and yet, as someone said recently to me, a pair of shoes can really tell you about a person. “The world’s oldest leather shoe, made from a single piece of cowhide laced with a leather cord along seams at the front and back, was found in a cave in Armenia in 2008 and is believed to date to 3,500 B.C. In 1999, Nick Swinmurn founded Zappos, an online shoe shop. In 2001, Zappos more than quadrupled their yearly sales, bringing in $8.6 million and in 2009 was bought by Amazon for a whopping $1.2 billion! We do love our shoes. Find out more about the apparel that has varied enormously through time and from culture to culture and that has brought us both pleasure and pain, the shoe…

Shoes :history from sandals to sneakers

Shoes :history from sandals to sneakers

100 Shoes

100 Shoes

Stiletto

Stiletto

Shoes

Shoes

Where will this shoe take you? : walk through the history of footwear

Where will this shoe take you? : walk through the history of footwear

High heels :fashion. femininity, seduction

High heels :fashion. femininity, seduction

Jimmy Choo XV

Jimmy Choo XV

Blahník by Boman :shoes, photographs, conversation

Blahník by Boman :shoes, photographs, conversation

Every step a lotus: shoes for bound feet

Every step a lotus: shoes for bound feet

Fashion footwear, 1800-1970

Fashion footwear, 1800-1970

Hot shoes :100 years

Hot shoes :100 years

Gourds Transformed into Art

Celestial Gourd

Celestial Gourd

Sandra and Dennis Kamp take the ordinary gourd and turn it into something extraordinary. They carve intricate patterns into gourds making beautiful vessels and weave on top of others. Other works have beading and weaving that completely surrounds the piece. You really need to see these to appreciate nature’s beauty made into art. The image above is just a small sampling of the pieces they make. Here are more…

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Here are some resources at the library that you can check out if you would like to make you own gourd crafts.

Antler art for baskets and gourds

Antler art for baskets and gourds/ Betsey Sloan

Historic gourd craft/

Historic gourd craft/ Angela C. Mohr

Beyond the basics :gourd art /David Macfarlane

Beyond the basics :gourd art /David Macfarlane

Gourds :Southwest gourd techniques/ Bonnie Gibson

Gourds :Southwest gourd techniques/ Bonnie Gibson

Complete book of gourd carving /Jim Widess & Ginger Summit

Complete book of gourd carving /Jim Widess & Ginger Summit

Glorious gourd decorating /Mickey Baskett

Glorious gourd decorating /Mickey Baskett

The decorated gourd :beautiful projects & new techniques /Dyan Mai Peterson

The decorated gourd :beautiful projects & new techniques /Dyan Mai Peterson

ourd pyrography /Jim Widess

ourd pyrography /Jim Widess

The complete book of gourd craft :22 projects, 55 decorative techniques, 300 inspirational designs /Ginger Summit, Jim Widess

The complete book of gourd craft :22 projects, 55 decorative techniques, 300 inspirational designs /Ginger Summit, Jim Widess