Northern Lights: Spectacular Sound and Light Show at York Minster

Northern Lights: A brand new sound and light show from the Projection Studio takes place at York Minster this weekend 16th and 17th June. The spectacular display put together by Ross Ashton and Karen Monid takes inspiration from the stained glass and architecture of the magnificent building. The events form part of a fundraising weekend to raise money in an appeal for protective glazing to be created for all of the Minster’s windows with medieval stained glass. The windows and their characters will take centre-stage in Northern Lights, as part of an immersive sound and light experience featuring music from the Minster choir.

 

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With projection onto the ceiling of the nave and quire, Northern Lights develops themes of creation, the history of the region and contemplation. Ordered Universe team members helped in the early stages of the project, and it will be wonderful to see the fruition of these ideas and the sensory feast that awaits.

 

All profits from the weekend events will support the fundraising campaign. Doors open at 8pm, with last admission 9pm, before the sound and light projection is shown at 9.30pm. The event will finish at approximately 10pm.

It will absolutely be worth it!

Tickets cost £5 and can be purchased through the Minster’s website at www.yorkminster.org. For more information visit the website or call 01904 557200.

Images courtesy of Ross Ashton.

Colour Vision Workshop in Durham

News of a workshop on colour vision taking place at Durham University this week,  in the Department of Psychology organised by Rebecca Wedge-Roberts.  The workshop will explore the subject with papers and discussion from Psychology, Anthropology, Continue reading

Tom McLeish: A Day to Celebrate, and an Award

It is almost 10 years (bar 5 months) since Tom McLeish, freshly minted as Durham’s second Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research, came to the History department in search of anyone who knew something about Grosseteste. What he got was the Ordered Universe project, of which he has been the driving force and inspiration. Tom left for the University of York this year, but  capacities as a scholar, friend, leader and mentor were honoured at Durham University yesterday, 29th May, with a conference organised by Kislov Voitchovsky and Karis Baker, representing Tom’s varied interests and contribution to learning (and to the enormous difference he made to research culture at Durham). Brian Tanner and Giles Gasper represented the Ordered Universe project, Brian in a summary of Tom’s considerable achievements, Giles in a discussion of Grosseteste, pastoral care and the place of science and scientific metaphors in that discourse. Papers followed on rheology (the science of flow), theology and science, neuroscience, emergent structures and philosophy of science, scale, and interdisciplinarity. All in all a proper testament to Tom’s commitment to teaching, learning, research and the old-fashioned virtues of enthusiasm, support for the possible, and the staying power and resilience to bring things to fruition. We in Ordered Universe know these qualities well!

It was also a delight to learn that Tom has been awarded the 2018 Lanfranc Award for Education and Scholarship by the Archbishop of Canterbury.  The award, named for Lanfranc, Archbishop 1070-89, predecessor of Anselm (very familiar to Grosseteste), marks outstanding work in education and science. We could not think of a more worthy recipient. So, congratulations to Tom, and a big thank you as well!

 

Boston MIT: Medieval and Modern Visual Alchemy

Earlier this month members of the Ordered Universe team, Joshua Harvey and Alexandra Carr gave papers at the Media Lab at MIT, Cambridge Massachusetts. Joshua’s paper, ‘Medieval and modern visual alchemy: material and digital ‘transmutation’ of chromatic statistics’, in which he presented his recent work on the potential of manipulating distributions of chromatic statistics within an image, to transfer material appearances. His research has significant potential applications in the fields of image processing and computer graphics and has been informed by his investigations into the medieval imitation gold material featured in polychrome sculpture.

Alexandra’s paper, ‘The body of colour: a medieval perspective’, outlined her artistic outputs to her collaboration with the Ordered Universe project so far, with a particular focus on colour. Setting aside the current rationalistic empirical paradigm, she proposed the notion of colour as a physical body through investigating the phenomena of light and the concept of darkness. Seeing the world through the eyes of a natural philosopher allows space for the psychological, metaphysical and philosophical implications of the theory of colour, which has led to new scientific theories. The artistic investigation, thoughts and outputs of medieval treatises demonstrates that a revisiting of ideas from antiquity and an uninhibited re-questioning of phenomena is conducive to new methodologies and theories.

 The talks provided a great opportunity for further lines of investigation both practically and philosophically, with colour perception and impossible colours taking centre stage. Dr Andreas Mershin of The Centre for Bits and Atoms very kindly showed everyone around the lab, wowed everyone with a laser capable of  allowing you to see colours you have never seen before, and described the work he is carrying out on olfactory and visual perception. Joshua, Alexandra and Andreas plan to meet shortly to continue sharing ideas and keeping the dialogue going. We’ll keep you posted as to where this leads.

The View from Kalamazoo…in pictures

Ordered Universe team members (Giles, Nicola, Mike and Sarah), and colleagues from Durham University (Helen, Abi and Katie), made the journey from Montreal to Kalamazoo and then back to Toronto airport and home. We have a visual record here…from Quebec to Ontario to Michigan, the Kalamazoo Congress (and dance) and the Museum of Ontario Archeology and its recreation longhouse on the way home!

The View from Kalamazoo

May is the season for the Annual International Congress on Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo. This year, the 53rd congress, saw the Ordered Universe present two panel sessions on Structures of Order in Medieval Science. The first, Experience and Authorities featured Nicola Polloni (Durham but imminently the Continue reading

Movement(s) of the Middle Ages – McGill/Durham 2018

Last week, following the Ordered Universe symposium at McGill, various members of the team stayed on and enjoyed a second event with our friends in Montreal. Organised between Durham University’s Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, and McGill University, we took part in a joint graduate conference on 7th May. Taking place at Continue reading

Moving objects, and heavenly bodies: Ordered Universe at McGill, Montreal

Last week the Ordered Universe team met at McGill University, Montreal. Some 18 members of the core group, from Durham, York, Oxford, Lincoln, Beirut, Siena, Berlin, Washington DC, Toronto, and the home team from Montreal, gathered together in the Continue reading

Guiding Stars, Motion and Light

 

Our next symposium is nearly upon us, this time at McGill University in Montreal, hosted by Faith Wallis. The programme is available in pdf form, or on Issuu. The three texts for scrutiny are On the Six DifferencesOn the Movement of Celestial Bodies, and On Bodily Motion and Light, which open up new territory for the collaborative reading sessions. Embodied light, the nature and cause of motion, and the notion of place – with the usual Continue reading