Knowing Colour - 2018/19

Activity: Participating in or organising an academic or articstic eventExternal workshops, courses, seminarsEducation

Timon Beyes - Organiser

"Colour is inescapable. It fills and forms the world, shaping what can be felt and known, desired and expressed. Yet where colour is and how it works are notoriously tricky and contested questions. Is it in our minds or bodies, or is it ‘out there’ in the word? Is colour perception culturally specific or universal? Does the way we talk about colour influence how we perceive it? Is it a mere appendage to social status – the black of intellectualism and artistry, say, or the muted colours of refinement – or does it shape social organization, e.g. as a tool of marketing or the manipulation of moods? As if behaving on its own terms, colour has proved to be supremely indifferent to scholarly categories, definitions and ordering systems. That colour remains one of the most puzzling phenomena for academic inquiry might explain its comparable neglect in the social and cultural sciences. ‘Colour passes us by in the same way in which we do not notice our own breathing until it stops, by which time it’s a little late’, writes the anthropologist Michael Taussig. This seminar is dedicated to noticing colour and investigating the perennial problem of knowing colour. The emphasis lies on historic and recent attempts to understand colour as a cultural and social force: what it does rather than what it is. How can we think and explore colour as a ‘medium of transformation’ (Walter Benjamin) that shapes, and that is shaped by, the social?"
Knowing Colour - 2018/19


Knowing Colour - 2018/19


Lüneburg, Lower Saxony, Germany

Event: Seminar