Things & Thoughts, Objects & Non-objects, Zen & Zoom

Ruth HartleyJourney, Philosophy3 Comments

‘Things are points of stability in life,’ the South Korean-born, Swiss-German philosopher Byung-Chul Han writes in his new book, Undinge (Nonobjects), ‘Objects stabilise human life insofar as they give it a continuity,’ I read this article titled Byung-Chul Han: How objects lost their magic by Gesine Borcherdt in the online Art Review and felt it was important for me without […]

We are on earth to grow bones

Ruth HartleyReligion, Truth2 Comments

Compost It’s a sunny winter’s day in my garden and I’m busy digging compost for my raised vegetable beds. I’m doing a job that gives me great pleasure. I’m outdoors, the weather is kind enough, the air is fresh and the sun is bright. My fork goes easily into the ground to loosen the earth and my woman-sized spade lifts […]

Truth and storytelling, minds, hearts and history

Ruth Hartley Storytelling, History, Human rights, Justice, Politics, Power, TruthLeave a Comment

There are those moments when something you read strikes you so forcibly that you know you must embrace it and consider it carefully. When this happens to me it’s usually for an important reason. It may throw a clear light on something that’s happening in my life or in life in general that I need to grasp intellectually. It may […]

Beauty, culture, colonialism and the purpose of art

Ruth HartleyAesthetics, Art Process, Colonialism, Creativity, Festival, Hamera and Hartley, Installations, m’Other Art, Religion, Visual Arts3 Comments

Can standards of beauty be imposed on artists? What is beauty and is it an essential part of art? Is there such a thing as a universal standard of beauty in art? I ask because the questions are relevant to discussions about the impact of colonialism on indigenous cultures. That’s an enormous subject and there won’t be any quick or […]

Art, beauty, colonialism and Mpapa Gallery

Ruth HartleyAesthetics, Art Process, Colonialism, Creativity, Education, Mpapa Gallery, Visual Arts, Zambia6 Comments

Discussion about art and beauty – and art and colonisation – is challenging. My past connection with Zambia and Mpapa Gallery, and my present connection with post-colonialism and my own art are about how I live my life. It has been said that Mpapa Gallery was colonial in its support for artists. Mpapa Gallery wasn’t and couldn’t be colonial for […]