Special Swandown event at the Shorelines festival with Iain, Andrew and others

7pm (doors at 6pm) – Main Hall, Ground Floor

For 4 weeks in the autumn of 2011, award-winning film-maker Andrew Kötting and cult writer Iain Sinclair pedalled a plastic swan over 160 miles from the seaside of Hastings to Hackney in East London, meeting all sorts of people along the way. This live multimedia performance, with Sinclair, Kötting and a host of others describes this adventure through spoken word, film and experimental acoustic sound led by Jem Finer. Not to be missed!

Venue: Festival HQ – Leigh Community Centre, 81 Elm Road, SS9 1HT, Leigh on Sea


Link: http://www.metalculture.com/southend-on-sea/shorelines-2013.html

Rachel Lichtenstein in conversation with Iain Sinclair, discussing Clerkenwell, Farringdon, and the mysteries of Hatton Garden


30 May – 9 June

31 May 7pm: Rachel Lichtenstein in conversation with Iain Sinclair discussing Clerkenwell, Farringdon and the mysteries of Hatton Garden

The show coincides with the launch of Rachel Lichtenstein’s new book Diamond Street: the Hidden World of Hatton Garden (Hamish Hamilton).

Hatton Garden is one of the most secret streets in England, home to a deeply private working community of diamond and jewellery dealers, brokers and makers. Long connected to the area through family ties, artist and writer Rachel Lichtenstein has undertaken an exploration of Hatton Garden, with its ancient priories, diamond workshops, underground vaults and subterranean rivers.

In ‘Sight Unseen’, a site-specific installation, Rachel Lichtenstein has distilled her research experience to re-imagine materials and artefacts. Velvet, gold, water and found objects form a multi-layered homage to the craftspeople who operate in the Hatton Garden area: that secret ‘fold in the map’.

Rachel Lichtenstein is the author of Rodinsky’s Whitechapel (1999), Keeping Pace (2003), A Little Dust Whispered (2004)  Rodinsky’s Room (1999, co-authored with Iain Sinclair) and On Brick Lane (2008) – the first in a trilogy of non fiction books exploring London streets. The second, Diamond Street, will be published in June 2012 with a volume on Portobello Road to follow. Her artwork has been shown at The Whitechapel Gallery, The British Library, The Barbican Art Gallery and many other places in the UK and internationally.





The Man Who Became A Room

£3 @ Rich Mix, London

The Man Who Became A Room is an exciting new play inspired by the non-fiction best-seller Rodinsky’s Room by Rachel Lichtenstein and Iain Sinclair.

An ensemble piece featuring storytelling and physical theatre, it follows the story of Rachel, a young artist in her early twenties, who becomes increasingly obsessed with a man called Rodinsky who disappeared from a room above a derelict East End synagogue in the late 60s. Her determination to find out who he was and what happened to him leads her on an eccentric journey to the lost world of the Jewish East End and its origins in Eastern Europe . On the way she has experiences that veer from the comic to the mystical, flirts with Jewish orthodoxy, and falls in love with a British Asian man. Only when she finally lays Rodinsky’s ghost to rest, does she manage to integrate these multiple identities , emerging into today’s very different East End and a future that embraces the multi-cultural Britain of today.

Playwright Sonja Linden, director Sam Brown and Associate Producer Josephine Burton present this as a work in progress, and would very much welcome audience feedback after the performance.


Max: a celebration. Remembering W.G. Max Sebald

Max: a Celebration – Remembering W.G. Sebald

Max: a Celebration – Remembering W.G. Sebald

Readings, Music and Film & Book Launches: W.G Sebald – Across the Land and the Water: Selected Poems (1964-2001) & Austerlitz – 10th Anniversary Edition, newly introduced by James Wood

On the 10th anniversary of his death, a unique event celebrating the late, great writer W.G. Max Sebald; with Anthea Bell, Ian Bostridge, A.S. Byatt, Julius Drake (tbc), Ian Galbraith, Dan Gretton, Grant Gee, Rachel Lichtenstein, Christopher MacLehose, Katie Mitchell, Andrew Motion, Iain Sinclair, Will Stone, Bill Swainson, Marina Warner and Stephen Watts.

Curated by Gareth Evans; staged in association with Katie Mitchell.

The late W.G. Sebald (18.5.44 – 14.12.01) was one of the most acclaimed writers of the last 50 years. Describing his ‘incandescent body of work’, Susan Sontag asked, “is literary greatness still possible? …One of the few answers available to English-language readers is the work of W.G. Sebald… he demonstrates that literature can be, literally, indispensable. He was one by whom literature continues to live.”

Over four key books in the 1990s (Vertigo, The Emigrants, The Rings of Saturn, Austerlitz) he created a style and a range of concerns that has had a huge and ongoing influence on numerous writers, artists and filmmakers. Uniquely hybrid works, his books combine fiction, memoir, history and travelogue into a seamless whole.

Spending almost all his adult life in England, firstly in Manchester and then Norwich, Sebald is perhaps most well-known for the remarkable Suffolk travelogue The Rings of Saturn and his Holocaust fictionAusterlitz, much of which is set in East London and the streets close to Wilton’s Music Hall.

In this unique event, many of Britain’s leading writers and artists celebrate Sebald’s life and writing in an evening of readings, music and film. Drawing from his remarkable oeuvre and their own reflections, on the 10th anniversary of his untimely death, they will honour a man whose profound and searching work has exerted an almost uncanny influence on our times.

Writers taking part include the multi-award winning essayists, novelists and poets A.S. Byatt, Dan Gretton, Rachel Lichtenstein, Andrew Motion, Iain Sinclair, Will Stone, Marina Warner and Stephen Watts. The books launched tonight will be introduced by their translators, Anthea Bell and Iain Galbraith.

One of the world’s greatest tenors, Ian Bostridge, will sing from Schubert’s iconic song cycle Winterreise, with remarkable accompaniment by Julius Drake (tbc).

Award-winning filmmaker Grant Gee (Joy Division) will present an exclusive ‘landscape edit’ of his forthcoming feature essay film Patience (After Sebald), a multi-layered meditation on landscape, art, history, life and loss, and the first film internationally about Sebald. It is produced by Artevents (www.artevents.info) and released in the UK in January 2012 by Soda Pictures (image from film).

Finally, it is a privilege to announce that Sebald’s UK publisher Christopher MacLehose and his editor Bill Swainson will attend and share their recollections.

There will be an event bookshop provided by independent booksellers Pages of Hackney (http://pagesofhackney.co.uk). Event filmed by Fugitive Images (www.fugitiveimages.org.uk).

Many thanks to Andrew Wylie, Luke Ingram, The Wylie Agency and the Estate of W.G.Sebald; and to Simon Prosser, Joe Pickering and Anna Kelly at Penguin Books.

Booking Information:

Dates: Wednesday 14th December

Times: Starts 7:30pm

Prices: £17.50

Link: http://www.wiltons.org.uk/listings/max-sebald.html

Shorelines: Contemporary British Authors on Sea

An extraordinary afternoon, with multiple award winning cult British authors Iain Sinclair, (Dining On Stones, Downriver) Jay Griffiths (Anarchipelago, Wild) and Robert Macfarlane (The Wild Places, Mountains of the Mind), who will join artist and writer Rachel Lichtenstein, to speak about the sea as a theme in their writing. Followed by a short break then a panel discussion with the above and poets Yang Lian and Stephen Watts.

Venue: Solomon Monk’s Pump House , Chalkwell Park

Cost: £5

Link: http://www.metalculture.com/southend-on-sea/shorelines.html