Iain Aitch
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Articles

I generally write about the arts, travel and eccentricity. If I can tie up all three in one story then I am a happy man. I have written for The Guardian, Daily Telegraph, The Observer, Financial Times, Times, The Independent on Sunday and The London Evening Standard.

I am interested in architecture and am London editor of Dwell, which is a people-friendly modern architecture magazine based in San Francisco. I indulge my interest in the seaside by writing for Coast as well as writing about events and food for the Guardian Guide.

I previously wrote for the wonderfully eccentric (and much-mourned) Nest and spent a few years writing columns about hoaxes and pranks for Bizarre magazine before starting a column for The Lady. I can't think of many who will have had a column for such diverse titles.

Art and Music:

Examining my own photographic work for the Guardian and explaining how a residency working with skinheads, mods, punks, rockers and rockabillies made me learn new things about youth, growing up and creativity. >> How Margate's skinheads, mods and rockers grew up

Ek, do, teen, char. An interview for the Guardian with the Kominas, who mix Hindi lyrics and Bhangra beats with punk rock. >> Bringing Islamic punk to the UK

What happens when anarcho-punks turned one-hit wonders decide to take on the British tradition of pantomime? I meet Leeds agitators Chumbawamba to find out for the Guardian. >> It's a riot

Chanson is not an artform we fully understand in the UK. I ask 75-year-old singer and songwriter Leon Rosselson why this is and look back at his impressive career for the Guardian. >> A very modest provocateur

Dutch jazz band The Ex have a problem: they cannot describe to anyone what they sound like or what they do. I hook up with them in Dublin to try to solve the riddle. >> The Ex: experimental noiseniks

You would not expect to find young offenders in an art gallery, let alone curating a show in one of the nation's major exhibition spaces. I visit the Koestler Trust for the Times to find out what happens when you let hoodies run an art show. >> How the offenders turned curators

Can art be the catalyst for love? The organisers of the first speed-dating event for artists at the ICA in London seem to think so. I go along with my art for the Guardian and prove a surprising hit with the capital's art lovers. >> The art of romance

This Guardian piece about New York antifolk singer Jeffrey Lewis talks about his album of Crass covers as well as detailing the heated arguments betwen that band's Steve Ignorant and Penny Rimbaud over a revival gig. This was chosen as one of the readers' articles of the year in 2007. >> Why should we accept any less ...?

Can the return of the fairground sideshow revitalise the seaside town of Blackpool? I ask the National Fairground Archive's Dr Vanessa Toulmin as we wander the town discussing burlesque, parachuting cats and headless ladies. >> Bring on the levitating lady

I have always had a soft spot for 1960s group the Shangri-Las, so a trip to New York to interview their singer Mary Weiss for the Daily Telegraph magazine was too good an opportunity to pass up. >> The Leader's back

more art and music articles

Travel:

I knew next to nothing about taking photographs before my trip to the Isle of Wight with Martin Parr, where I saw the lost-in-time British island through his eyes. >> Bowled over by a new way of seeing

Can anywhere outside of Edinburgh and Glasgow bring in the arty tourists? I visit Dundee for the Telegraph and find a slice of the real Scotland. >> Dundee's designer delights

Sometimes travel writing is a strange kind of misery, such as when visiting the decidely uninspiring Dickens World visitor attraction in Chatham, Kent. >> Where the Dickens is the real thing?

I don't know about you, dear reader, but I don't have my own butler at home. This review for the Financial Times of Boath House hotel in the Scottish highlands details how I got on when I borrowed one for the weekend. >> The butler did it all

Portland, Oregon is a place of pilgrimage for those who enjoy all things literary in the US. I visited the city's bookstores for the FT, from the enormous to the tiny. >> Easy life that speaks volumes

Tracey Emin and I revisit our home town together for The Observer - and plot a takeover that would put Margate back on the tourist map. >> For Tracey home is where the art is...

more travel articles

Architecture and design:

John Carver and Anna Carloss are Sir Paul McCartney's next door neighbours in the English countryside, but their rural cottage retreat has stuffed foxes and modernist design rather than roses around the door. From Dwell. >> Heart of the country

Young architects Youmeheshe have come up with the concept for a zero carbon home that resonates with the planet around it. But will everyone think that they are hippies? From Dwell. >> Hz so good

With a growing prison population can how we build rather than how many we build offer a solution? I explore this idea for the New Statesman in a piece about Wil Alsop and his Creative Prisons . >> Gild your own cage

Sean Godsell was a crocked footballer who failed his exams, but that spurred him on to be one of the world's most exciting young architects and even care about people along the way. >> Futureshack to the rescue

more architecture articles

Other features: Including people-based articles and comment:

A commentary for the Independent on Sunday on the arts-led regeneration of Margate, complete with details of how middle-class Hackney DFLs are changing the face of the seaside town (but not always how they think). >> Welcome to Margate.

An interview with controversial comic Frankie Boyle about his TV series Tramadol Nights, what he makes of Stewart Lee and the coalition. This one caused a stink online with comedy fans and Guardian readers alike. >> HIGNFY is everything that is wrong.

A comment piece for the Sunday Express about the Government's decision to promote Britain with some rather uninspiring postcards featuring Wallace & Gromit. >> Postcards from the edge

An article for the Guardian on the impact of and reasoning behind a hefty hike in Open University fees. >> Open University increases fees

This lengthy piece for the Telegraph magazine looks at the groups who travel around the world to ride rollercoasters, as well as what makes a classic coaster as well as the science and stats that surround the building of a new one in Southend. >> Carry on screaming

I spent several late nights with the noise patrol teams of Islington and Bristol councils for this lengthy piece on what they do and the impact of neighbour noise on everyday life. Contains nuts. >> Keep it down

Ugly man blogger Stan Cattermole has a lot of fans, it is just that none of them would like to sleep with him. I find out why for the Daily Mail. >> Would you date an ugly man?

Interviewing comedian Gareth Berliner about how a chronic bowel disease saved his life. A health section article in the Daily Telegraph. >> A funny way to survive

Having entered several odd contests in the past Staremaster sounded like a breeze. But I discovered the horrors of the dry-eye death phase of competition staring in this article for the Daily Telegraph. >> One blink and it's over

I had never been in a riot until I went to visit Hexham near Newcastle for the Guardian. I came home a fully fledged rioter, though I did have to dress funny. >> Are we dead yet?

Meeting the wonderfully dapper and politely revolutionary Chaps as they protest against incivility, improper tailoring and running shoes in London. >> There's a good chap

 

All content copyright © 2014 Iain Aitch
 

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Evening Standard
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Coast
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