Owen Hatherley is a writer and journalist whose varied body of work covers architecture, politics, aesthetics and culture. He is the author of numerous books, including Militant Modernism (Zero Books, 2009), A Guide to the New Ruins of Great Britain (Verso 2010), Landscapes of Communism: A History Through Buildings (Penguin, 2015) and The Ministry of Nostalgia (Verso, 2016). He edited and introduced a new edition of Ian Nairn's Nairn's Towns (Notting Hill Editions, 2013). His writing has appeared in the Architectural Review, Dezeen, The Guardian, The London Review of Books, Building Design and Jacobin Magazine.
Owen will discuss his latest book The Trans-Europe Express: Tours of a Lost Continent (Allen Lane, 2018). In the book, Owen seeks to find out what makes the European city unique and coveted around world. He asks why European cities are so different from their Anglo-American counterparts and considers why attempts to mimic their achievements in Britain so often fail. In a journey spanning the Continent - from Skopje and Hull to Lviv and Hamburg - Owen visits public squares, modernist concert halls, city parks, peripheral housing estates and metro stations in an effort to capture the essence of European urbanism in the early twentieth century.
Following a discussion of the book and its themes, there will be an opportunity to ask Owen questions about his wider body of work.
This event is part of the State of the Arts IdeaSmiths series of talks on politics, cities and culture.