Every retreat the La Muse library grows thanks to all of the wonderful books that our attendees bring along. The result is a real artists' and writers' library - a selection of quirky favorites, instructive volumes, and classics (old and new) built by Musers for Musers.
This month's additions to the Library range from 'how to' to pop-surrealism and we thought it'd be a fun thing to share the titles. Hopefully we can do this for every retreat, as it lets people know who's here, where they come from and what they're into...
Dave Beazley, (the guy with the blue headgear below) is an artist from New Zealand. He brought A Land of Two Halves by Joe Bennet about New Zealand and Vitamin P - New Perspectives in Painting by Barry Schwabsky. Dave describes the latter as the essential resource for the contemporary painter, or anyone with an interest in keeping their finger on the pulse of contemporary art.
The lady smiling beside Dave is Cindy Willis. Her two books, The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein and Song of the Crow by Layne Maheu are both novels where the narrators are from the perspective of animals. Both Garth and Layne are friends of Cindy's and the three of them are in the same writers group in Seattle.
Marg Hammond, a writer from the sandy shores of Bermuda, made us all jealous of the picturesque vistas of her homeland with A Scope to Bermuda by Ian MacDonald-Smith. Marg also brought with her The Autobiography Handbook, edited by Jennifer Traig, to help all future Muser's attempting to put their past on paper.
Francesca Piredda (below) the very talented Italian author who lives in Canada, who donated her novel Bambina to the library last time she was here, this time chose to bring some great books by Mavis Gallant ( From the Fifteenth District) and John Metcalf (An Aesthetic Underground: A Literary Memoir).
Sue Brown from Australia, currently living and studying in England, in reflection of her temporary home in England brought Skating to Antarctica by Jenny Diski and The Oxford Book of Short Stories, compiled by V.S. Pritchett.
Andrea Simper, a jewelry designer from New Zealand, donated Unclasped by Derren Gilhooley and Thrift to Fantasy by Rosemary McLeod, both of which have inspired her beautiful work at various stages in her career. The blue headgear the other attendees are wearing are works Andrea is working on for a burlesque show (Miss Polly Ray and the Hurly Burly Girlies) that was on Broadway. It's now showing in London at the Leicester Square Theater .
Kerry and John also took books of the shelves by previous attendees to share with the new arrivals, as well as instructive books they thought might help with the various artists' projects.
Kerry chose Francesca's great novel Bambini, the short story collection Runaway, by Alice Monroe, Nola and Turning Life into Fiction by Robin Hemley, Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Cape Clear by Ted Deppe, Cronopios and famas by Julio Cortazar, The Language of Flowers by Marina Heilmeyer and Floral Ornament by Clara Schmidt and Helen Franchi.
John chose Stephen Adly Guirgis' Our Lady of 21st Street, Jesus hopped the 'A' Train, In Arabia we'd be Kings, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, Chinatown by Robert Towne, Stranger than Fiction by Zach Helm, The Writing of Fiction by Edith Wharton, Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf by Edward Albee, Aspects of the Novel, by E.M. Forster, On Writing by Steven King and The Pastures of Heaven by John Steinbeck.