Preview: Raymond Tallis and Julian Spalding on The Purpose of the Arts Today

Hear two leaders of contemporary thought, talking about why the arts are essential to our experience of the world as human beings.

 What is the purpose of the arts today? Ever asked this question, or indeed been asked it? Whether or not you’ve been able to vocalise what it is that makes art a pressing need, here are two who definitely can. Raymond Tallis and Julian Spalding have co-written a book entitled Summers of Discontent: The Purpose of the Arts Today, and are coming to King’s Place to discuss its contents, with audience participation warmly invited.

The main thrust behind the book is that art is created because of the urgent need for a means ofprocessing the world around us, without which we cannot wholly experience.

Raymond Tallis’s accomplishments are as eclectic as they come: a neuroscientist, a novelist, a cultural critic, a philosopher, a poet… he is a major thinker in more fields than most of his readers can follow him to. His publications include such titles as Why the Mind is Not a Computer and I Am: A Philosophical Inquiry into First-Person Being.

Julian Spalding is the maverick art critic who is best known for calling the bluff of the contemporary conceptual art world, most memorably Damien Hirst. He is also an outspoken broadcaster, the author of The Art of Wonder and founder of many innovative galleries throughout the UK.

Hear experts speak engagingly and humanly on a topic that has endured discussion from the time of the Ancient Greeks and is still relevant today as we emerge from a recession which caused much upset over arts funding and sparked the creative industries’ battle cry: “it’s a credit crunch, not a creative crunch”.

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