Reading Group - Camden Art Centre

Reading Group

Wednesday 18 June
7.00 – 8.30pm

Camilla Wills, editor of I'm Your Fan, leads three monthly book club sessions, discussing texts which respond to themes prevalent in Moyra Davey's work.

Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle / Six volumes / Memory clinic / final session

Very broadly the previous reading groups have considered how to turn personal phenomena (the example) and identity (promiscuity) into method. These Knausgaard reviews are selected to think about the volume and power of descriptive writing, radical transparency, and how the labour of memory can be used to examine and dramatise the present, or read signals from the future. Whether they are moments of recognition or mis-recognition, memories are transactions that affirm without necessarily being accurate. There is no stable frame around Knausgaard’s memoirs, such as a present core to which he always returns or writes from, digressions within digressions are threaded together to find a deeper historical truth. Local resident Diana Athill, who has written six volumes of memoirs herself, will join the group to reflect on these questions, and on her experiences of working with Jean Rhys among other writers. At the end of the session some excerpts from Marc Karlin's For Memory (1986) will be screened.

James Wood, ‘Total Recall’, review of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle (Book 1), The New Yorker, August 2012
Sheila Heti, ‘So Frank’, review of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle (Book 2), London Review of Books, January 2014
JW McCormack, 'Fjordian Slip', review of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle (Book 2), The New Inquiry

Virginia Woolf, ‘A Sketch of the Past’ (excerpt) in Moments of Being, Pimlico 2002

The reading group takes place on Wednesdays 23 April, 14 May & 18 June and has been programmed alongside Moyra Davey's exhibition life without sheets of paper to be scribbled on is masterpiece. Participants are encouraged to read the texts ahead of the session, and attend as many of the three sessions that they can. Please contact Nisha Matthew on for more information on the texts.

The exhibition is accompanied by a publication of Moyra Davey's writing, I'm Your Fan, co-published by Camden Arts Centre and Camilla Wills.


Café open until 10.00pm with The Playlist by Camilla Wills