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Into the Dazzling Light of the Unknown

Key details


  • Online
  • Online via Zoom


  • Free

Who could attend

  • RCA only


  • Lecture

A college wide MRes online lunchtime lecture series on Wednesdays from 1–2pm.

This seminar series is led by artist, writer and research tutor, Jonathan Miles. The seminars begin with short writing exercises and prompts before journeying across cultures, time, and space to explore creative production and the unknown.

What kind of questions arise for creative practice at the intersection of what is seen and what can be shown? When Wittgenstein said that we tend not to put the question deep enough down he raised the issue of how we negotiate the intersections that lie between things. The light of common sense is dull by virtue of not seeking out the light of difference or exception, seeking instead measure and equivalence. Creativity is a poiesis or a coming into presence. It arrives late and as such is invariably untimely, seeking out the yet to come. This marks creative production as a futural endeavour and object, but one that is not marked by knowability. Aesthetic theory arose within the various gaps that emerged in the philosophical pursuit of knowability. In the shadow of such a pursuit there are ideas such as: rupture, excess, blindness, spectrality, the night, rapture, aporia, resistance, silence. In the wake of such figures there is a general economy of obscurity.

This series is based upon the nervous impulse to explore these ideas and figures in ways that trace what can be said and what must be passed over. Art history, contemporary creative practice across art, design and architecture, aesthetic theory, philosophical poetics, and fiction, will all be combined for these interdisciplinary encounters.

Themes explored include abjection, matter, emptiness, experiment, improvisation, light, otherness, touch, beauty, sublime, spectrality, imagination, energetics, memory, and the fragment.


18 October – Light Being

1 November – Spectrality

15 November – Sublime

22 November – Imagination

29 November – Blind

6 December – The Night

Join online via Zoom

Into the Dazzling Light of the Unknown