Royal Academy of Arts Chief Executive Charles Saumarez Smith released East London in April, a tour of the East End that the Wiltshire-born custodian fell in love with in the seventies.
Next month, he’ll make his way to Pages of Hackney bookshop to discuss his work and share some stories from his travels.
The book is a spin-off of Saumarez Smith’s blog, which sees the amiable former National Gallery director snapping and waxing lyrical about local architecture and history, with many a Hackney post exploring London Fields, the noble history of Newcome’s School (where now stands Clapton Girls’ Academy) and indeed East End bookshops themselves.
In East London, published by Thames & Hudson, he applies this chummy style to locales like his home base of Stepney, the Docklands, through Tower Hamlets and the backstreets of Hackney, all the way up the Regent’s Canal and across Victoria Park.
Pages’ East London event is one of three they are running in July: on 6 July, environmental law firm Client Earth’s self-titled book will be discussed by its creators, Hackney-based James Thornton and writer/poet Martin Goodman.
In a glowing review in the Citizen, Sarah Birch praised the book’s “inspiring account of how social entrepreneurialism and ingenuity can make great strides in holding governments to account”.
On 11 July the Pages team decamps to Sutton House to host a discussion of Brexit: What The Hell Happens Now?, a new book labelled “For people who still believe in experts” that states the case for “why exiting the EU is likely to make the UK poorer, leave industries like pharmaceuticals and finance struggling to operate, and possibly break up the UK.” Guardian journalist Rafael Behr will join the book’s author, Ian Dunt.
All events cost £4 for tickets, which are available through Pages of Hackney’s website.