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Tales from the Colony Room
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'Entertaining, shocking, uproarious, hilarious . . . like eavesdropping on a wake, as the mourners get gradually more drunk and tell ever more outrageous stories' (Sunday Times)

About the Author

Darren Coffield has exhibited widely in the company of many leading artists including Damien Hirst, Howard Hodgkin, Patrick Caulfield and Gilbert and George at venues ranging from the Courtauld Institute, Somerset House, to the Voloshin Museum, Crimea. In the early nineties Coffield worked with Joshua Compston on the formation of Factual Nonsense, the centre of the emerging Young British Artists scene. A book by Coffield about this period in British art, Factual Nonsense: The Art and Death of Joshua Compston, was accompanied by an exhibition at Paul Stolper Gallery. He lives and works in London.

Reviews

  • 'Entertaining, shocking, uproarious, hilarious . . . like eavesdropping on a wake, as the mourners get gradually more drunk and tell ever more outrageous stories' Sunday Times
  • 'Riveting . . . An elegy to that vanished world . . . where people talked to each other and not just their mobile phones' Daily Mail
  • 'The escapist read I needed' Guardian
  • 'Wonderfully evocative' TLS
  • 'Lobs a multicoloured grenade into the frigidity of the present moment' Andrew O'Hagan, LRB
  • 'One of the finest oral histories I have read. Packed with accounts of outrageous rudeness, wild behaviour and the bleak-black wit of its lowlife regulars, it has been a joy to eavesdrop on the Rabelaisian tales of this infamous drinking den. From the era of Muriel Belcher to Ian 'Ida' Board and on to Michael Wojas, and encompassing the bitter characters that inhabited its grubby green walls, this is an essential record of the petty criminals, underworld gangsters, writers, artists, actors and aristocrats that defined Soho's 20th century cultural life. I cannot recommend it highly enough. It is a future classic' Adelle Stripe

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