The Art of Seeing – Vision and Ekphrasis 


with Mary Attwood 

Thursday 28th September 2023

7-8pm UK time via Zoom


7-8pm UK ti

Free-heartedness, and graciousness, and undisturbed trust, and requited love, and the sight of the peace of others, and the ministry to their pain;– these and the blue sky above you, and the sweet waters and flowers of the earth beneath; and mysteries and presences, innumerable, of living things – these may yet be your riches.

John Ruskin

Ekphrasis is the oldest form of writing about Art. Derived from ancient Greece, it has been revived many times since, including during the renaissance and Victorian times, by artists, writers, poets, philosophers and theologians. John Ruskin was one such leading exponent of ekphrasis during the 1800s. Its purpose is to describe a work of art so vividly, poetically and descriptively, that the listener is able to envision the image, through their visionary imagination, as if it were physically present. While ekphrasis takes the form of the written and spoken word, it is lifted from being a mere commentary on art into a rich visual realm.  The listener – who listens deeply and intently – sees the world with renewed eyes. The natural world, from humans, animals, rocks and water, are each appreciated for their simplicity and complexity, their smallness and their greatness. The interconnectedness of all life and living things participating in something that we do not always see can be revealed again. 

These sessions take a threefold approach of theory, practice and reflection with just one work of art.  The work of art will not be revealed until the session, but do please bring open open eyes, ears and a pen and paper! Or, if you prefer to just listen and look, you can do that too.  These sessions are open to everyone whether you are a seasoned art lover or not. 

 This session will be recorded.

In order to book please visit Mary’s website here




Mary Attwood is an art historian, author, mentor and business creative with a particular interest in the ways in which our perceptions of art can awaken us to a deeper, embodied dimension of being we have lost in our post-modern age. She is a founding member and co-director of the Centre for Myth, Cosmology and the Sacred, and co- founder and director of Channel McGilchrist. She holds a BA (hons) in the History of Art from London University where she followed her passion to study Italian late medieval and renaissance art and architecture, while also pursuing her interest in Eastern philosophy, qualifying as a teacher in yoga, meditation and mindfulness, and co-authoring two books published by Watkins. She holds an MA with distinction in Myth, Cosmology and the Sacred. She believes that the ways in which we engage with art can alter perceptions and consciousness and help us meet the complexities of modern living by offering a renaissance of humane and sacred values.



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