2011 Spring Lecture Series - Colour and You: How Colour Shapes the World and Your Life
Colour and You: How Colour Shapes the World and Your Life
Five Thursday evening lectures
March 31 - April 28, 2011, 7:15 - 9:15 pm
232 Spencer Street East, Cobourg
Colour and You: How Colour Shapes the World and Your Life
Colour. We’re drenched in it. Moved by it. Mad for it.
We reflect it, select it, apply it, debate it.
All this we know.
Now, find out what you don’t know.
Take a tour of colour with us. Learn about
- the colours of the heavens and what they tell us
- the link between colour and contentment
- how colour in the hands of masters can influence how you perceive the world
- what your brain knows about colour that you don’t
- the colour of music
Sign up today for five thought-provoking talks by some of Canada’s foremost speakers on the art, science and psychology of colour.
March 31, 2011 - Heavenly hues: what the colours of the universe tell us
~ James Taylor
The heavens reveal a spectacular array of colours: golden suns and crimson sunsets, blue summer skies and silver moons. Mars shines rusty red, Neptune glows like an azure sea, and the nebulae of the Milky Way glitter like jewel boxes. Where do these colours come from and what can they tell us? Learn how we perceive colour in the natural world, and find out about the properties of light using images from astronomy.
James Taylor is assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Waterloo. His research focuses on dark matter: the mysterious substance that surrounds galaxies like our Milky Way.
April 7, 2011 The psychology of colour: why too much white is bad for your health
~ Janice Lindsay
We live according to rules of colour that are millions of years old—a wisdom so essential to our survival, it is ingrained in our DNA. By connecting the dots that link the psychology, biology, history and aesthetics of colour, you’ll find out why women understand and use colour differently from men, how colour affects our perception of place and space, and how we apply it to achieve comfort, health and happiness.
Janice Lindsay is one of Canada’s leading colour designers, consultants and speakers. Known as the Globe and Mail’s “design diva,” her book, All About Colour, takes readers on a spellbinding tour of colour and its contribution to our quality of life.
April 14, 2011 - On the canvas: how Cezanne, Matisse, and Mondrian used colour
~ Ron Shuebrook
In the same way that writers bend language to express ideas in creative ways, so painters use colour to express meaning in their works. What did modern artists Paul Cezanne, Henri Matisse, and Piet Mondrian discover about the power of colour to inspire, provoke and satisfy? What did the investigations by later twentieth century painters such as Josef Albers, Hans Hofmann, and Jack Bush reveal about how colour can affect perception and space? And what can we draw from these historically influential insights today?
Ron Shuebrook is an internationally exhibiting painter, and former president of the Ontario College of Art and Design. OCAD awarded him an honorary doctorate for his contributions to art and higher education.
April 21, 2011 - Perceiving colour: why your brain matters more than your eyes
~ Amir Raz
Some people have a greater quantity of colour-sensitive cones in their retina than others. Yet, most of us appear to perceive colours in the same way. That’s because colour perception is controlled more by our brains than by our eyes. From colour blindness to a condition that compels people to visualize numbers and characters in colour, we’ll explore the relationship between colour and brain science—including why red pills stimulate and blue pills calm.
Amir Raz holds the Canada Research Chair in the Cognitive Neuroscience of Attention at McGill University. He heads the Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory at McGill and the Clinical Neuroscience and Applied Cognition Laboratory at the Jewish General Hospital. Amir Raz's talk was a highlight of the memory series in 2009. We welcome him back.
April 28, 2011 - Your mind’s ear: what colour is that concerto in D major?
~ Gordon Greene
Music readily imitates birds and storms. Can it evoke colour, too? If you hear a funeral march, do you see black? Fourteenth century composers used contrasting inks to signify changes of rhythm. Oliver Messiaen's musical compositions are known for “the rapid changing of intense colours.” And Alexander Scriabin’s symphony Prometheus was intended to be performed with a play of coloured light projected from a newly invented colour organ. Enjoy numerous musical examples as we draw the link between music and colour.
Gordon Greene served as chair of music history at University of Western Ontario, and dean of music at Wilfrid Laurier University. He has been offering music sessions to lifelong learning groups in Ontario and Florida for 10 years.
2011 Fall Lecture Series - The DNA of Modern China
The China that is becoming a modern superpower is still shaped by its past. How do we understand this nation which is close to matching, or surpassing the USA as a world power? Only by appreciating China’s ancient and recent past, can we comprehend how she is transforming our everyday lives. Join us for six lectures that will examine influences, past and present, affecting China’s growth today and in the future.
The DNA of Modern China
Six Thursday evening lectures, five seminars and a Royal Ontario Museum tour
October 27 - December 2, 2011
Each lecture includes a presentation by the speaker, refreshments, and an opportunity to ask questions. Held from 7:15 pm to approximately 9:15 pm at the Columbus Community Centre, 232 Spencer Street East, Cobourg (north of King Street E., just west of D’Arcy Street).
Each seminar includes a presentation by the speaker on a topic related to the lecture, refreshments, and an opportunity to enjoy a discussion with fellow participants. Held from 9:30 am to 11:30 am in the Program Room of the Public Library in Port Hope, 31 Queen Street, Port Hope.
Tickets to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) for the guided tour of the Chinese art and artifacts collection on Friday, December 2 at 11:00am, cost $20 each. Participation is limited to 30 people. The ticket price does not include transportation or a luncheon following the tour.
Thursday, October 27, 2011:
The creation of China’s early empires
The Han Dynasty (206 BCE–220 CE) is considered China’s Golden Age. Until recently, however, it has never been clear how much Han rulers adopted the practices of their predecessor, China’s First Emperor. Now, extraordinary discoveries in the Emperor’s mausoleum and ancient documents are providing new insights into early imperial structure and society. The new evidence is essential for understanding China today.
Friday, October 28
Seminar: New insights into daily life in early China
Robin D.S. Yates is James McGill Professor of East Asian Studies and History and Classical Studies, chair of the Department of East Asian Studies, and director of the Centre for East Asian Research, McGill University.
Thursday, November 3, 2011:
Thinking through Chinese culture
Confucianism was enthroned as state orthodoxy during the Han period, although for much of the first millennium CE it shared the stage with Buddhist doctrines from India. It was eventually challenged by Western imperialism at the end of the 19th century and by Mao Zedong Communism in the 20th century. Today, China lives in tension between a cosmopolitan modernity and a renewed respect for Confucianism and other aspects of Chinese tradition.
Friday, November 4
Seminar: Gaining the “All under Heaven”: The moral imperative of political order
Jeremy Paltiel is professor of political science, Carleton University, and was visiting professor in the department of international relations at Tsinghua University, Beijing, in 2009.
Thursday, November 10, 2011:
China as the world and China in the world
The three dynasties of imperial China’s middle period (618-1368) displayed three different but distinctly Chinese postures toward the rest of the world. The confident and cosmopolitan Tang dynasty was the most advanced civilization of its time. The wealthy and refined Song dynasty turned inward and introspective. Yuan thinkers saw themselves as the seat of Khubilai Khan’s global empire. How, ultimately, did all three of these attitudes embed themselves in China’s historical memory to manifest themselves in the modern era?
Friday, November 11
Seminar: The position of woman in traditional China
Richard Guisso retired in 2010 from 30 years of teaching in the Department of East Asian Studies, University of Toronto, including two terms as chair. He has written the defining biography of China’s only woman emperor.
Friday, November 18, 2011:
Chinese society and state: on a collision course?
For the past decade or more, China’s leaders have assigned top priority to maintaining public order and creating a “harmonious society.” Yet, while the leaders celebrate decades of rapid growth, new inequalities threaten political stability. China faces many issues: rising tensions between farmers and local governments, laid-off workers calling for assistance, legions of migrant farmers asking for equal treatment, and even grievances from the new middle class. A newly pluralistic society is a problem for a party-state regime seeking to remain in power.
Saturday, November 19
Seminar: China—the search for a harmonious society
Victor C. Falkenheim is professor emeritus of political science and East Asian studies, University of Toronto His research interests and publications centre on local politics and political reform in China.
Thursday, November 24, 2011:
China's long global context
China's current global presence is part of a long history in which China was dominant in the world. In the seventeenth century, Chinese demand for silver and the superiority of its manufacturing and transport sectors drew China, Europe, Southeast Asia, and the Americas into an extensive trading network that laid the foundations for the modern global economy. The lecture will range from the porcelain kilns of Jingdezhen, to the silver mines of Peru, and the upstairs studio in Delft where Johannes Vermeer painted his exquisite masterpieces.
Friday, November 25
Seminar: How a China historian looks at Vermeer
Timothy Brook teaches Chinese history at the University of British Columbia and holds the Republic of China Chair at UBC’s Institute of Asian Research. His eight books include Vermeer’s Hat: The Seventeenth Century and the Dawn of the Global Age (2008).
Note, Date Change: Wednesday, November 30, 2011:
China's ongoing economic transformation
Three decades ago, China ranked among the world's poorest countries, with more than half of its people living in severe poverty. Today the Chinese economy is one of the world's most dynamic and soon to be the largest. This talk will explore how China got there; the economic and political reforms underlying its success; and some of the serious challenges – demographic, economic, environmental and political – that China now faces as it tries to sustain growth.
Loren Brandt is professor of economics, specializing in the Chinese economy, at the University of Toronto, and is a research fellow at the Institute for the Study of Labor in Bonn, Germany. He was co-editor and contributor to China’s Great Economic Transformation (2008), and an area editor for the five-volume Encyclopedia of Economic History (2003).
Friday, December 2, 11:00 am
Optional event: Join us for a guided tour of the Royal Ontario Museum’s collection of Chinese art and artifacts.
Resources for 2011 The DNA of Modern China
Lecture # 2:
- Roger Ames and David Hall's Thinking Through Confucius
- Jonathan Spence's To the Gate of Heavenly Peace;
- Arthur Waley's Three Ways of Thought in Ancient China;
- James Fallows Postcards from Tomorrow Square
Lecture # 3:
- J.K. Fairbank (ed) - The Chinese World Order
- E. Schafer - The Golden Peaches of Samarkand
- P. Curtin - Cross-cultural Trade in World History
- J. Bentley - Old World Encounters: Cross-cultural Contacts and Exchanges in Pre-modern Times
- R. Hayashi - The Silk Road and the Shoso-in
- J. Gernet - Daily Life in China on the Eve of the K. Invasions
- M. Rossabi - Khubilai Khan
- Bret Hinsch - Women in Early China
- Patricia Ebrey - The Inner Quarters
Lecture # 4:
- Bruce Gilley, China’s Democratic Future
- David Shambaugh, The Chinese Communist Party: Atrophy or Adaptation
- Richard McGregor, The Party
- Jianying Zha, The Tide Players
- Yu Hua, China in Ten Words
- Timothy Brook, Vermeer's Hat: The Seventeenth Century and the Dawn of the Global World
- Jonathan Spence, The Memory Palace of Matteo Ricci
- Frederick Wakeman, Strangers at the Gate