Beyond Baroque founder George Drury Smith talks about decades of change in Venice and Marina del Rey

Photo by Kathryn Jacobi

Photo by Kathryn Jacobi

George Drury Smith moved to Venice in the mid-1960s to join the Beat poetry scene, only to find it had washed out to sea. Instead, he made his own literary scene by founding Beyond Baroque (originally a lit mag) and got tangled up in a small but ambitious Marina del Rey media startup called The Argonaut.

On Sunday, the Marina del Rey Historical Society Speaker Series brings Smith back to Beyond Baroque to talk about his long, strange trip building community on the printed page as the lit center’s founder and as the former associate publisher of The Argonaut.

Smith’s knowledge of area history reaches back to 19th-century Rancho La Ballona, but his specialty is the history he’s lived — particularly anecdotal tales of the swinging marina scene and Venice’s hippy haven days of the late 1960s and early ‘70s. He also plans to discuss social, environmental and governmental issues that persist with this decade’s transformative growth and development.

— Joe Piasecki

George Drury Smith speaks at 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 6, at Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center, 681 Venice Blvd., Venice. A reception for Smith starts at 6 p.m. Call (310) 822-9344 or visit and click “news” to reserve seats.