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Pariah Genius: Stewart Lee and Iain Sinclair in conversation

EVENT: Pariah Genius: Stewart Lee and Iain Sinclair in conversation

DATE: 2nd May 2024 - 2nd May 2024

TIME: 7.00 - 8.30 pm

VENUE: Swedenborg Hall

SPEAKER/S: Stewart Lee and Iain Sinclair


CHEERIO PUBLISHING presents an exciting trilogy of events in conjunction with the exhibition Pariah Genius: John Deakin, the Psychobiography of a Photographer, being staged at Swedenborg House.

In the first event in the series, novelist, filmmaker and psychogeographer Iain Sinclair, who is, according to Alan Moore, ‘perhaps the finest and most necessary living writer in the English language’ is joined in conversation with legendary comedian, director and writer Stewart Lee, as they discuss Iain’s new novel Pariah Genius, a ‘psychobiographical fiction’ centred on the photographer John Deakin and the drunken court of Francis Bacon.

Attendees who buy the book will also get a free glass of wine and have the opportunity to have their copies signed on the night.

Pariah Genius will be on sale at the discounted price of £17.50 on the night.



STEWART LEE is a comedian, writer and director, who has won many awards for his stand-up shows and television series. In 2001 he co-wrote and directed the musical Jerry Springer: The Opera and between 2009 and 2016 he was commissioned to make four series of Stewart Lee’s Comedy Vehicle for the BBC. He is the author of several books, including the novel The Perfect Fool and two collections of prose stemming from his columns and reviews for newspapers and magazines: Content Provider: Selected Short Prose Pieces, 2011-2016 and March of the Lemmings: Brexit in Print and performance 2016-2019. His new show Stewart Lee vs the Man-Wulf opens in London in December.

IAIN SINCLAIR is considered one of London’s greatest chroniclers. Iain’s early work consisted mostly of poetry which he published on his own small press, Albion Village Press. His novels include Downriver (winner of the James Tait Black Prize and the Encore Prize) and Dining on Stones (shortlisted for the Ondaatje Prize). Non-fiction books, exploring the myth and matter of London, include Lights Out for the Territory, London Orbital and Ghost Milk: Calling Time on the Grand Project. For the Swedenborg Society he has written Blake’s London: The Topographic Sublime (2011); Swimming to Heaven: The Lost Rivers of London (2013); and (with Brian Catling) Several Clouds Colliding (2012).

About the organizer

CHEERIO PUBLISHING is an eclectic, independent publishing imprint and production company launched in 2020 in association with The Estate of Francis Bacon. They commission innovative books and films that confound received ideas and open the door to new perceptions, aiming to bring unusual books to a mainstream audience. In the spirit of Francis Bacon’s work, CHEERIO are here to intrigue, disturb and thrill. They have published works by Jeremy Deller, DBC Pierre, Ingrid Swenson and Sarah Fletcher, amongst others.

IMAGE CREDITS (from top) and thanks

Lead image: Gaston Berlemont, portrait of proprietor of The French House pub, Soho, London, UK, 1950s. Reproduced by kind permission of the John Deakin Archive/James Moores.

Photograph of Stewart Lee by Gavin Evans.

Photograph of Iain Sinclair by Joy Gordon.

With special thanks to CHEERIO, the Estate of Francis Bacon, Jeff Towns and John Christie.