Poesia / Mário Cesariny. Assírio & Alvim, 2017.
The UL recently acquired Poesia by Mário Cesariny (1923 – 2006), the first comprehensive collection of poetry by the Portuguese Surrealist. The library began collecting Cesariny’s work in the late 1980s, when much of his poetry was re-published and gained a new audience – but by which time he himself had more or less abandoned writing to focus on painting.
Cesariny was born and lived his whole life in Lisbon, though during his early 20s he briefly studied art at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris. While he was there, in 1947 he met one of his major influences, André Breton. Spurred on by this encounter, Cesariny and his circle, who regularly met at Lisbon’s cafe A Mexicana, formed the Grupo Surrealista de Lisboa later that same year. Before formalising the birth of Portuguese Surrealism, these young writers and artists, amongst them the poet Alexandre O’Neill, had already begun to reject the strict Neo-Realism that had formed the dominant artistic opposition to Salazar’s regime. Continue reading
Segeberg font by Quoth via Wikimedia Commons
I was recently cataloguing a book on monasteries in Schleswig-Holstein (Klöster in Schleswig-Holstein: von den Anfängen bis zur Reformation by Oliver Auge and Katja Hillebrand). As I was leafing through the pages I was struck by a double page spread on baptismal fonts, and in particular by a full-page photograph of the highly decorative one to be found in the Marienkirche in Bad Segeberg.
The most notable feature of these fonts to me is that they were made of bronze, often, it seems, as a sideline for bellfounders (they do perhaps resemble upside-down bells). After a little research I soon realised that unlike in Britain (where stone was the usual material for fonts) there are still many fine examples of bronze baptismal fonts in northern Germany and nearby. Continue reading
Earlier this year, Sir Charles Chadwyck-Healey spoke about the visual side of the peerless Liberation Collection he has donated to the University Library. This post, however, focuses on an unillustrated book whose interest, certainly for me as a librarian, lies in the identity of the author.
An important part of cataloguing work in the Library is what we call authority work – adding or editing records for people for the master authority file hosted by the Library of Congress. Each record provides a unique main heading for an individual (eg Hugo, Victor, 1802-1885) and cites books where this and other forms of names appear. By using this unique heading in a catalogue record, all works by or about someone will file together in a library index even if the person’s name might appear differently in each separate book (eg V. Hugo).
Many of the books in the Liberation Collection need this authority work. More often than not, a new authority needs to be created. Sometimes the author has a record already but we need to update it to note a different form of the name. On the odd occasion, the book we are looking at is on such a different topic to those cited in the writer’s authority record that without further investigation we might assume that our author is someone different.
In the past few years, the University Library has been very fortunate in receiving the private libraries of two late British Ukrainians – Peter Yakimiuk and Teodor Kolassa. Together, these donations have added hundreds of chiefly diaspora publications to the Library’s 20th-century Ukrainian collection. This blog post celebrates a few of the many eye-catching book covers to be found amongst them. All but the last of the six items detailed here were produced in Europe within a few years of the end of World War 2. Please click on each image to see a larger version.