Call for Art
Brand Library & Art Center announces its 49th Annual National Juried Exhibition of Works on Paper. Brand 49 welcomes Marvella Muro, Director of Artistic Programs and Education at Self Help Graphics and Art (SHG) in Los Angeles, as this year’s juror. Entry Deadline: May 23, 2021. All submissions must be made via CaFE. Brand 49 is organized by the Associates of Brand Library & Art Center.
Listen to a streaming playlist from Freegal Music, Naxos Music Library, Naxos Jazz Music Library, Hoopla or Music Online from Alexander Street free with your library card. Alexander Street will ask for an academic institution, use Glendale Public Library.
Hula Records has been around since 1947 and has lots of fun Hawaiian music in its catalog. Many of the titles are available on Alexander Street which you can stream with your library card number.
Are you interested in exploring recordings of traditional Korean music and instruments? Alexander Street has 14 volumes in C. K. Jung's Traditional Music Recording Series. The series covers a variety of instruments and singers.
Read About Music
We have quite a few music theory books in the Brand Library collection as they have always been popular with our patrons. Here are a few of the new titles. You can also scroll through this list of titles.
The Early Music Show is a production of BBC Radio and is available to US listeners. Recent episodes have included Orlando Furioso, Bach’s Easter Oratorio and Telemann in Poland.
Brand History: The Man Beneath & The Legacy of Sessue Hayakawa
In 1919, Brand Library & Art Center (at the time, Leslie Brand’s home Miradero) was featured in the silent film The Man Beneath, starring Sessue Hayakawa. The story revolves around the "impossible" love affair between a prominent Indian scientist who visits Scotland and a white woman. Brand Library was used in the film as the setting for the home in India of the scientist. Playing the scientist was one of the first non-white leading men of Hollywood, Sessue Hayakawa.
With a popularity rivaling that of Charlie Chaplin, his breakout role was 1915’s The Cheat, building him a large fanbase of American women. He was often cast opposite a white woman, typically as the forbidden lover, and due first to anti-miscegenation laws and the Hays code of 1930, his character never got the girl in the end. The scandalous stories of forbidden love drove audiences into theaters. The Man Beneath is a prime example.
Hayakawa was born in Nanaura village, Japan in 1889. In 1907, he moved to California sponsored by abalone fishermen from his home prefecture, Chiba. Taking home courses in economics and working odd jobs led him to perform in the theater in Little Tokyo. In 1913, he was spotted by film producer Thomas Ince, who cast Hayakawa in his films The Wrath of the Gods and The Typhoon. Hayakawa became so successful in mainstream cinema that he started his own production company with his wife, actress and director Tsuro Aoki in 1918, producing 23 films.
Through the decades, his career fluctuated due to American nationalism, floundering as anti-Asian sentiments rose in the country. He often travelled to Europe and Japan as his film work in Hollywood dried up. He is best known today as Colonel Saito in 1957’s The Bridge on the River Kwai, for which he was nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. He continued acting until 1966, when he officially retired.
Learn About Asian American Pacific Islander Art
Teaching Modern and Contemporary Asian Art is a resource that features 27 artists in the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s collection. The artists in this resource are from countries across East Asia and Southeast Asia, but many live and work between two or more cities around the world. The approach, known as global art history, seeks to integrate art from Asia within an international purview while illuminating its specific meaning and context. By showing how artists work between local, regional, and global currents, this resource seeks to provide a new understanding of the multiple histories of the art of our time. With these materials, they hope to introduce teachers and students to artists and artworks beyond the Western canon, as well as support those who want to broaden the narrative of art history in the classroom.
The Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center and Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access present Making Art + Global Interconnections. In this module series you will find four artmaking ideas that can be used in in-person, at-home, and virtual K-12 classrooms. Four teams of educators came together to learn more about each other's lives, why they teach, why they create art or study art, and what drives their practice.
Brand Library Staff Reviews
Megumi Sasaki’s documentary film Herb & Dorothy (2007) examines how a married couple of humble means—a city librarian and a postal worker—managed to amass a priceless art collection, with works numbering in the thousands. Herb & Dorothy Vogel were art lovers who became passionate about conducting studio visits and buying art from artists, dealers, and auctions in the 1960s. When we meet them as a sharp-eyed, charming older couple in their apartment in the early 2000s, their floors and walls (including kitchen and bathroom) are covered in artworks from Richard Tuttle, Chuck Close, Donald Judd, Jeff Koons, and Sol Lewitt. There were purchasing rules: they only bought what they loved, the work had to be affordable, needed to be small enough to fit into their New York City apartment, and they would never sell *anything.* In the 1990s, they gifted their collection to the National Gallery of Art because it would be made available to the public for free, and because the National Gallery does not sell works from their collection. For their donation, Herb & Dorothy received an annuity, which of course they then used to buy more art. Herb passed away in 2012, but as of 2019, Dorothy was still participating in the art world. As a library worker descended from a couple generations of postal workers, I find this documentary quite heartening! -SB
Bach Nostalghia - Francesco Piemontesi, piano (released April 2, 2021). This beautifully recorded album of music by J.S. Bach (1685-1750) on the PentaTone label was recorded in the Jesus Christ Church in Berlin and has a massive reverberant sound. As the Swiss pianist Franceso Piemotesi (b.1983) noted, these Bach transcriptions seem nostalgic compared to the more current early music movement that focuses on original instruments. Still, I have seen many a pianist and audience that still enjoy these transcriptions and I’m sure both practices will continue far into the future. Piemotesi is an acclaimed pianist and he certainly does not disappoint on this album. One of the things he is noted for is his sensitivity which is especially clear on the Prelude in E-flat major, BWV 552, the Italian Concerto and the Schubler Chorales. Ferruccio Busoni (1866-1924) is central to this album as he made many popular Bach transcriptions as well as being an acclaimed pianist and composer. Piemontesi includes Busoni’s own dramatic Toccata (1921) which has characteristics of both late Romanticism and early Modernism in its exciting virtuosity and mood changes. After that his beautiful sensitivity on the Busoni transcription of the Fugue in E-flat major, BWV 552 is a fantastic closer to the album. -BW
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