My mood seems to be as variable as the weather at the moment but since my last ‘Random Thoughts’ I have been finding stuff to cheer myself up with. Watching the media coverage of the London riots hasn’t been helping with this of course, nor has the sight of those seeking to make political capital out of them hasn’t helped much either. But if you will excuse me I am going to ignore all that in this post and just concentrate on positive things.
Firstly, I have just got through finishing watching Waldemar Januszczak‘s excellent documentary series looking at the artistic revolution brought about by the Impressionists. I found this fascinating and informative. Januszczak pulls off the difficult task of combining an explanation of the lives of the artists, their characters and personal motivations, the social and historical context in which they worked, the ideas and meanings they were trying to convey, and giving you an appreciation of the art itself. I also like how he talked about the technological and scientific innovations that made the art of Monet, Renoir, Degas and the like possible. If you missed it you have a few days to catch up on the series on iPlayer.
Oh, and don’t worry if you aren’t that much into art. The series is hugely entertaining. To give you a flavour, and to show one of the highlights, the video below is of the opening of the first programme:
I loved the musical sequence in this clip, so went off to find out more about it. The music is from French group Hold Your Horses who did an original video for their song ’70 Million’ recreating famous paintings which is also on YouTube. They also have recently released an EP which has been my soundtrack for most of the last few days. (iTunes / 70 Million on Amazon)
I’ve also been a little inspired by what my friend Ali Goldsworthy has written in her list of ‘20 things to do in the next ten years‘. Number 4 made me laugh out loud. It made me start jotting down potential items for a list of my own. Such an exercise seems appropriate given recent significant birthday and other events. However, not entirely sure if it is a good idea. For me such a list is in danger of becoming a list of things to feel guilty about not having done anything about!
I am always pleased when I find something written by Alix Mortimer and so it is good news that she is now doing stuff over at Dale&Co. I am even more pleased when she hits upon something I 100% agree with; ‘Won’t Someone Think of the Librarians?‘. The future of libraries in our communities is often a very emotive issue, but one where debate and decisions are commonly distorted by misconceptions. Alix is spot on in pointing out that the unique thing about libraries is not the books, or the buildings, but the librarians. Librarians are cool.
Finally, a quick hello to Spidey at Spiderplant Land who has been added to the blogroll, mainly because she said nice things about me.
This content was originally posted on my old Strange Thoughts blog.