Thanks to everyone who came to our utopian/future cities talk at the London School of Economics. Thanks also to the organisers and the panel (Dr Matthew Beaumont, Professor Rachel Cooper and Professor Richard Sennett). I really enjoyed it. Here’s a link to listen to or download the discussion. I’ve included the images I refer to below (from 19:50 onwards on the audio) so it should make more sense.
I’ll be talking at StAnza festival on poetry and the city this Friday. I gather they’ll be streaming it as a live webcast from their site but all welcome to attend in 3D.
Couple of exciting cities projects coming up, the details of which I have to keep under my hat for the time being but one will be a really cool talk in London at the start of June and the other (early days but hopefully all going to plan) will be an Imaginary Cities-collaborative art exhibition, with original work by some of my favourite artists. Can’t wait for these to happen, especially the latter. Watch this space.
I was interviewed for the weekend edition of the Phnom Penh Post about the Cambodian capital and how the city inspired me to start writing Imaginary Cities as well as several unpublished works. The full unedited interview is included below (with photos of some of the architecture discussed); my thanks and gratitude to Audrey Wilson for great questions. P.S. I took the photograph above on a motorbike whilst being overtaken by a bad-tempered Buddhist monk.
I had the pleasure of talking to the Irish Times recently about Imaginary Cities, growing up in Derry, and the end of the world among other things. It was especially welcome because the interviewer was Karl Whitney, an exceptional writer whose work I’m a fan of (his book on Dublin Hidden City is essential reading). The Irish Times piece is available to read here with the full unedited talk below:
It’s been an insane year and it’s good to finally hibernate, hang out with my boy, and start working on new books (Notes on Three Drownings and Fata Morgana) with the accompaniment of storms rolling in from the sea. I’ve been genuinely blown away by the kind responses to Imaginary Cities and it’s incredible that it appeared in The Guardian‘s Best Books of 2015 (“a dizzying and brilliant piece of creative non-fiction”) and The Financial Times‘ (“A compendium of fantasy cities that takes its cue from Marco Polo via Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, this remarkable survey reveals the influence that the metropolis of the mind has had on the real thing”).
Why should the buildings of future cities be permanent or solid? I’ve been answering such insane questions for the excellent Aeon Magazine so you don’t have to.
In a week when it seems like half the country is underwater, here’s a piece I’ve written for The Guardian on seasteading, radical architecture, future cities, and the pressing need for a global warming Plan B.
In the past ten or so years, I’ve had the pleasure of visiting and writing about a lot of great art galleries in about a dozen European countries. Thanks mainly to the vision of the curator Graham Domke, the DCA is up there with the best of them and in my opinion, it’s the leading space for art in Scotland (the current Hideyuki Katsumata exhibition is a joy). So it was a real delight when they invited me to talk about Imaginary Cities. I decided, following earlier talks elsewhere, to focus in on alternative Scotlands that were or could’ve been. The DCA were kind enough to record the talk and allow me to share it; here it is with the images I referenced chronologically. Hope you enjoy.