Thursday, September 26, 2013

The importance of an unread library

I am so pleased that someone has put this in print for me to quote:

Collect books, even if you don’t plan on reading them right away. Nothing is more important than an unread library.
~ Steal Like An Artist 
Austin Kleon

I took this photo of one of my bookshelves this morning, without making any aesthetic alterations (perhaps you can tell). This shelf is on the way in to my bedroom and tends to be where books get dumped in haphazard array (again, you might have noticed). There is no rhyme or reason - it features poetry, novels, recipes, Christian-living, biography, psychology, pop-philosophy, crochet, children's stories - as well as my op-shop recorder and a pear still-life painted by my flatmate. I'm not sure what the tealight candle-holder is doing there, as I ain't ever going to light it on the bookshelf.

You might have noted me quote pieces from Austin Kleon's tumblr and his newspaper-blackout poetry over the years. His book Steal Like An Artist has been in the Bookdepository wishlist for a long time. When Georgianne started quoting choice morsels I was prompted to actually purchase it. So far, so good. One of Kleon's main hypotheses is that nothing is original, and all art is a composite of your inspirations, you just need to know where and how to steal them (which is liberating and enabling!).


Catherine said...

That is indeed an inviting bookshelf. I would love to dig into it and steal a few away...

Ali said...

I shall make you a member of my library!

Catherine said...

Do I need a card? Will there be fines?

Ali said...

Well, it could present a challenge to my waning "J"-ness to implement, but I do like the idea of those little envelopes in the front of books with cards that must be signed by borrowers in them.