Saturday, June 28, 2008

Summerdance Film Festival

The San Francisco Public Library partners with San Francisco Ballet School to present a three-part series of dance films in the Koret Auditorium this summer. While the Koret stage is not an ideal one to dance on, its screening capacities and direct sightlines allow us to turn it into a premiere film venue. The films and dates are listed below:

Billy Elliot: The setting is 1984 in Northern England coal mining village during a bitter strike. The local gym offers boxing and ballet instruction in studios at opposite ends of the structure. Billy Elliott, an 11-year-old miner's son, discovers that he prefers ballet to boxing. He must keep his growing interest a secret from his widowed father and domineering elder brother, but it comes to light when his ballet teacher arranges an audition for acceptance into the prestigious, if elite, Royal Ballet School in London (110 min. 2000).
One showing: Saturday, June 28, 2008, 4 p.m.

Alicia: Made by a Chicago film collective led by choreographer Frank Boehm about 22 years ago, this documentary profiles the life and career of Cuban Ballerina Assoluta, Alicia Alonso. Alonso began her dance career at [American] Ballet Theatre in New York, and with the brothers Fernando and Alberto Alonso, founded the Cuban National Ballet and built it into a world class company against the backdrop of the 1959 Cuban Revolution. (55 min.)
Two Showings: Wednesday, July 2, 2008, 4-5:30 p.m. and 6:15-7:30 p.m.

Cathedrale Engloutie is a selection from "Four by Kylian." To music by Claude Debussy, Czech choreographer Jiri Kylian uses the image of a cathedral braced against a rising tide to underscore the interrelationships between dancers as they respond to the resulting naturalrtic crescendo of sound. (20 min. 2000/1983) Swansong was created by British choreographer Christopher Bruce to capture the implied power relationships and overlay of violence in the detainment and interrogation of a victim by military guards. (37 min. 2006).
Two Showings: Wednesday, July 16, 2008, 4-5:30 and 6:15-7:30 p.m.

All programs at the library are free.
Supported by the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library

Monday, June 16, 2008

Beads and Beadwork: An Introduction

Beads have been part of the human story for thousands of years. Any small decorative object that is pierced for threading or stringing may be considered a bead. Beads range in size from miniscule to several centimeters in length and are made from a wide variety of colorful materials including glass, pearls, coral, wood, bone, ivory, seeds and shells. The oldest beads found to date were made from ostrich eggshells around 10,000 BCE.

Most people associate beads with jewelry. Beads are also used to embellish clothing and create accessories such as belts and purses. But historically beads have often functioned as more than adornment. They have been used as ritual offerings, given curative powers, served as prompts to prayer, and acted as a means of exchange for procuring goods.

Beadwork is the art or craft of attaching beads to one another or to other objects for decorative purposes. Generally beadwork falls into one of two categories, woven or sewn. Woven work is created on a bead loom. Sewn beadwork is made by attaching beads with a needle and thread to a piece of fabric, leather or other material. Some parts of Asia and Africa have been producing beaded art since ancient times. The Indians of North America are famous for their exceptional and exquisite beadwork.

The San Francisco Public Library has an extensive collection of reference and circulating books on this topic. Most of these titles may be found in the online catalog by typing bead or beadwork in the Subject field. Below is a list of some of the newest titles:

Beading With Charms: Beautiful Jewelry, Simple Techniques by Katherine Duncan Aimone. New York: Lark Books, 2007. 745.5942 D9121b

Beadwork Creates Jewelry: 40 Beaded Designs by Jean Campbell, editor. Loveland, CO: Interweave Press, 2007. 745.5942 B3594

Getting Started With Seed Beads by Dustin Wedekind. Loveland, Colo.: Interweave Press, 2007. 745.5942 W414g

Make It In Minutes. Beaded jewelry by Wendy Remmers. New York: Lark Books, c2007. 745.582 R285m

Mastering Beadwork: A Comprehensive Guide To Off-loom Techniques by Carol Huber Cypher. Loveland, Colo.: Interweave Press, c2007. 745.582 C9927m

Simply Stunning Beaded Jewelry by Donatella Ciotti. New York, NY: Sterling Pub., 2007. 745.5942 C494s

Stringing Style 2: 50 More Designs For beaded Jewelry by Jean Campbell, editor. Loveland, CO: Interweave Press, c2007. 745.5942 St867

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sports and Science

A wide range of titles relating science and sports have been published for the so-called "thinking sports fan." While many of these books use an understanding of science to enrich the spectator experience, athletes have also used scientific discoveries to maintain a competitive edge. A sport like golf, for instance, invites contemplation and calculation. For soccer players there are angles of the bounces of the ball to consider. In basketball one calculates angles and dimensions, and in baseball the spin of the ball and the effect of wind and air. NASCAR teams make use of physics and engineering in their race track preparation.

Here is a short reading list of books at the San Francisco Public Library that cover the science of a variety of athletic and competitive pursuits.

Newton On The Tee: A Good Walk Through The Science Of Golf by John Zumerchik. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2002.

The Physics of Baseball by Robert Kemp Adair. New York : Perennial, c2002.

The Physics of Basketball by John J. Fontanella. Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006.

The Physics of Hockey by Alain Haché. Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, c2002.

The Physics of NASCAR: How To Make Steel + Gas + Rubber = Speed by Diandra Leslie-Pelecky. New York: Dutton, 2008.

The Science of Sailing. New York : Scribner, 1961.

The Science of Soccer by John Wesson. Philadelphia : Institute of Physics Pub., 2002.

The Science of Swimming by James E. Counsilman. Englewood Cliffs, N.J. : Prentice-Hall, 1968.

What Makes a Boomerang Come Back: How Things in Sports Work by Sharon L. Blanding and John J. Monteleone. Stamford, CT: Longmeadow Press, 1992.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Women Wielding Cameras: Women, Power and Politics Film Festival

On Saturday, June 14, 2008 the International Museum of Women will present four documentary films on women, power and politics at the San Francisco Public Library.

The featured films include "Las Madres: The Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo," about Argentina's "Dirty War" of the 1970s and 1980s, "God Sleeps in Rwanda," about women rebuilding their lives after the genocide in Rwanda, "Dishing Democracy" about an Arab satellite TV show that presents controversial issues, and "Run Granny Run" telling the story of Doris "Granny D" Haddock who at age 90 walked across America to protest the influence of big money in American politics.

Filmmakers Lourdes Portillo, Kimberlee Acquaro, Marlo Poras and political activist Granny D. Haddock will be in attendance to comment on the films and answer questions from the audience.
This event is presented in conjunction with the International Museum of Women global online exhibition of the same name. For more information visit

This program will be held on Saturday, June 14, 2008 from 11 AM to 5 PM at the Koret Auditiorium at the Main Library. All library programs are free and open to the public.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Public Relations and Marketing for Chamber Musicians and People Working in Music

woodcut by Hans Burgkmair from the Art, Music and Recreation Center picture file

The San Francisco Public Library's Art, Music and Recreation Center and the San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music will sponsor a two part workshop for musicians and individuals working in the field of chamber music. These workshops will cover many aspects of career development including fundraising, self-promotion and presentation plus outreach program development.

Part 1, Public Relations and Marketing Fundamentals
June 4, 2008, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

This introductory class would serve as a primer on how to design and implement an effective in-house campaign.

Part 2, Strategic Marketing and Public Relations: Developing an Integrated Campaign
June 11, 2008, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

This class is for people who have experience (however limited) with public relations and marketing. It can be a companion to the first class or taken on its own.

All library programs are free and open to the public. Both workshops will be held in the Latino/Hispanic Community Room on the lower level of the Main Library.

We gratefully acknowledge the generous support of the Fleishhacker Foundation in making this program possible.

For more information:
Telephone: (415) 710-0551