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The Library of Exile

Edmund de Waal

01/03/2020 11:00 am
Kings Place, Hall 1

Prize-winning author and artist Edmund de Waal talks about his library of exile.

“This library celebrates the idea that all languages are diasporic, that we need other people’s words, self-definitions and re-definitions in translation.” Edmund de Waal

Edmund’s library comprises more than 2,000 volumes in almost all the languages of the world, written by exiled authors from antiquity to the present day. It has been exhibited in Venice and Dresden and will open at the British Museum in March 2020.

This event was introduced by Jewish Book Council Trustee Stephanie Marcus.

Edmund de Waal


Edmund de Waal CBE is an internationally acclaimed artist and writer, best known for his large-scale installations of porcelain vessels, often created in response to collections and archives or the history of a particular place. His interventions have been made for diverse spaces and museums worldwide, including The British Museum, London, The Frick Collection, New York and the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna. His memoir, The Hare with Amber Eyes, won the RSL Ondaatje prize and the Costa Biography Award, was named as one of the books of the decade by the Sunday Times and of the 21st century by the Guardian. It was the Independent Bookseller Book of the Decade and has been translated into 29 languages. In 2015 he was awarded the Windham-Campbell prize for non-fiction by Yale University. The White Road, a journey into the history of porcelain, was published to great acclaim in 2015.  Edmund will present a major new exhibition this autumn at the Musée Nissim de Camondo, Paris, inspired by his latest book Letters to Camondo . He lives in London with his family.  

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In memory of Dr David Cohen CBE