Bacon in Moscow
A talk by James Birch and Rowan Pelling.
‘A rollicking cultural adventure…Fascinating and true. What a liver!’ — Grayson Perry
To celebrate the publication of Bacon in Moscow, a new memoir by James Birch, the HENI Art Club hosts an interview between author, James Birch, and journalist, broadcaster, writer and stand-up comedian, Rowan Pelling.
Bacon in Moscow is a funny and personal account of an audacious quest by James Birch, the young British curator, to mount the ground-breaking Francis Bacon exhibition at the newly furbished Central House of Artists, Moscow in 1988.
Published by Cheerio, the book tracks Birch’s journey to open the landmark exhibition, which becomes somewhat sidelined by the British establishment. Birch found himself not only the subject of a honey-trap, but also the focus of the KGB and a picaresque and shady cast of officials, attachés and politicians. Birch’s exhibition brought an unseen Western culture to Russia during perestroika, just before the fall of the Berlin Wall, making it part of the sea of change in the events that subsequently unfolded.
James and Rowan divulge the scandals, triumphs and lows faced throughout the book, making for a funny and insightful telling of this artistic adventure at a time of political upheaval. Bacon in Moscow is be available to all HENI Art Club members in the digital library.
‘I don’t know much about espionage – but I know what I like, and I love this book. Five gold stars!’ — Harland Miller
‘Funny, exhilarating and heart-breaking all in one go!’ — Polly Stenham
Organiser: HENI Art Club
Event Type: Live
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