Monday, August 22, 2011

Authors Read from Literary Houston

As part of the “Authors in Architecture” lecture series, two writers involved with Literary Houston, published in 2010 by TCU Press, will read from the book on Sept. 21 at the Clayton Library, 5300 Caroline St. The event is co-sponsored by the Architecture Center Houston and the Houston Public Library. Admission is free.

The presenters will be the book’s editor David Theis and local arts writer Lisa Gray, who is among the 60-plus authors represented in Literary Houston. Theis will discuss how architecture, planning, and historic preservation are addressed in the book. The collection includes a well-known Ada Louise Huxtable piece from The New York Times, a Joel Garreau excerpt from Edge City, and an article on the Astrodome by Douglas Pegues Harvey originally published in Texas Architect.

A reception and book signing will follow the presentation. Find more information about the event at Architecture Center Houston (ArCH) is a collaboration of AIA Houston and the Architecture Center Houston Foundation.

At 5:30 p.m., attendees will be offered a brief tour of the recently renovated library given by Ernesto Maldonado, AIA, of Glassman Shoemake Maldonado Architects. Maldonado will talk about his firm’s recent award-winning renovation and addition to the historically significant building.

Literary Houston is an anthology of writing about Houston and Houstonians. The content is categorized in sections titled “Memoir and Biography,” “Visitors,” “The City Itself,” “Events,” “Poetry,” and “Fiction.” A good deal of Houston history is included, dating back to the days of Cabeza de Vaca and continuing through the Battle of San Jacinto and up to Enron and Hurricane Katrina. Works by local writers are included, along with articles by writers with national and international reputations, including Larry McMurtry, Norman Mailer, Ada Louise Huxtable, and Simone de Beauvoir.

David Theis moved to Houston in 1984 to study in the creative writing program at the University of Houston. Upon graduation, he became a journalist writing for Houston City Magazine, The Houstonian, Texas Observer, Texas Monthly, Cite, and numerous other publications. From 1989 to 1994, Theis was a staff writer for the Houston Press where he wrote news, features, and film reviews. In 2002, his novel Rio Ganges was published by Winedale Press. He is currently at work on a second novel.

Lisa Gray is a member of the Houston Chronicle editorial board and a weekly columnist covering things that contribute to Houston's peculiar sense of place—the city's environment, urban design, architecture, history, and whatever else seems interesting that week. She is a former managing editor of Cite, the Rice Design Alliance's quarterly magazine; a former managing editor and columnist at the Houston Press; and a former managing editor of Washington City Paper. Her work has appeared in Business Week, People, Good Housekeeping, O at Home, and Slate.

The Clayton Library was built in 1917 as a family home. It became a part of the Houston Public Library System in 1966 when a special collection for genealogical research was relocated there and the building was opened to the public. Glassman Shoemake Maldonado’s recent project included renovating and remodeling the guest and carriage houses on the property. This included an addition to the carriage house allowing for national conferences on genealogical research to be hosted onsite.

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