Our workshop meeting concluded with the public lectures, on which Ulrike has commented already. It was a privilege to speak in the Pichette Auditorium, and a particular pleasure to see some Durham alumni in the audience – thank you Martin, Heather and Aversa. Heather had even had the privilege (!) of working through Grosseteste’s De colore and Letter 1 in my Special Subject class 2012-2013. The support from the Ordered Universe team, and the Pembroke community was also very much appreciated, from the warm introduction by the Master, Dame Lynne Brindley, to the questions which came thick and fast at the end. The format of two lectures and with multiple presenters allowed us to showcase the work we’ve done to date, on the De colore, the De luce and the De iride, and to reveal in more detail how the various members of the team have been inspired scientifically as well as contextually. Grosseteste poses difficult but rewarding challenges, to read and interpret, and to do so with respect to the integrity of the text, what we can know of its context and the intentions of the author, and, at the same time, to preserve the integrity of our own investigative threads, experience and expertise, and allow the fusion of past and present to inspire and encourage a creative response. It was wonderful to see Richard’s models of the medieval universe, and to follow again the mathematical translation of the De luce, and to watch Hannah unfold Grosseteste’s colour space across the De colore and the De iride, and to think through the framework which Tom set up; not forgetting the historical context, of course!
At the reception back in the now transformed Harold Lee Room, there was a real buzz of conversation, between team members and members of the audience. We had prepared a slide show of the Ordered Universe to date, and Clive revved up the Chladni plates, truly tested, for their first public outing. We are truly grateful to the Mahfouz Forum for making this event the success it was, and all of the staff at Pembroke, and, of course to the participants – collaborative reading only works in collaboration, and with all of the generosity, risk-taking and trust that that involves.
What next: the public lectures were videoed and will be available as webcasts soon, we’ll post them as soon as we have them. Our next Ordered Universe event is for the Festival of Humanities, in Durham, 18th-19th November, which will feature Michael Brooks, and the first public showing of the visualisation of Grosseteste’s universe. The voiceover is by Sir Thomas Allan, Professor Nick Holliman of University of York the technical and creative force. The next workshop is in March, dates to be confirmed, this will be organised by Jack Cunningham at Bishop Grosseteste University. See you soon!