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In conversation with Stephen Harrigan
ABOUT THE ELECTRIC HOTEL
For nearly half a century, Claude Ballard has been living at the Hollywood Knickerbocker Hotel. A French pioneer of silent films who started out as a concession agent for the Lumière brothers, the inventors of cinema, Claude now spends his days foraging mushrooms in the hills of Los Angeles and taking photographs of runaways and the striplings along Sunset Boulevard. But when a film-history student comes to interview Claude about The Electric Hotel—the lost masterpiece that bankrupted him and ended the career of his muse, Sabine Montrose—the past comes surging back. In his run-down hotel suite, the ravages of the past are waiting to be excavated: celluloid fragments and reels in desperate need of restoration, and Claude’s memories of the woman who inspired and beguiled him.
ABOUT DOMINIC SMITH
Dominic Smith grew up in Sydney, Australia, and now lives in Seattle, Washington. He is the author of the novels The Last Painting of Sara de Vos, Bright and Distant Shores, The Beautiful Miscellaneous, and The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Texas Monthly, and The Australian. He has been a recipient of literature grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Australia Council for the Arts. He teaches writing in the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers.
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