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Press Play Exhibition
- in collaboration with

An exhibition exploring witnessing, contemplation and silence - allowing us to discover the universals through the intimately personal

Background and Inspirations to the Exhibition Concept

Witnessing - Contemplation - Spirituality - Religion


Personal Context


Being the youngest of 7 chidren, I had the enormous fortunate to be part of a large family, opening my eyes to many influences and dynamics.

It provided me with some provocative / evocative contrasts:

  • My mother was a devoutely practicing Catholic, converting from Church of England in her early 20s, against considerable family dissapproval

  • My father essentially atheist, in reaction most likely against his evangelical parents, and

  • My eldest brother an ordained dhamacahri Buddhist community member, his journey to Buddhism starting over 30 years ago.

Alongside the age and generational contrasts within our family, there were many relational, health and material ups and downs over the years, which opened up the larger philosophical, spiritual questions of life to me. 

This exhibition feels born of these influences, along with the key aspects of my professional journey, as described below.

Professional Journey - from technology to the humanities and human complexity studies

Having naturally been drawn to the sciences in my studies, I graduated in engineering, with early employment with a large UK aerospace group. But I quickly became fascinated by the complex social, economic and environmental issues, organisaing a climate change conference in London in 1991, and working for 4 years with an NGO in Africa and Asia. 

After an MBA and stints back in industry including satellite communications, my interests led me in the past 10 years to creating an organisational development consulting associates brand, with projects in the Human Resources domain. 

At the heart of this consulting practice, was a conviction of the value of integrating the humanities into organisational design theory and practice, with influences from anthropology to social and complexity sciences. From the beginning therefore with my co-founder, we used free expression narratives as our cornerstone of observational work. This lead to larger scale 'Sensemaking' projects, replacing closed Likert scale questionaires, with qualitative free expression narratives.


The signification and interpretation of such narratives was a crucial question in the integrity of such an approach, and more information can be found on that here: "Navigating Complex Human Systems - The Sensemaking Practice".


Sections below in the process of drating and editing:

Witnessing as Narratives Signification

  • Notion of compression.. What an image, a painting can communicate non verbally

  • What is it to witness someone, in their vulberability, through their emotions?

Witnessing as Contemplation

  • The process of witnessing an other.... for someone walking into the gallery, the art of being present and listening

  • An exercise in consciousness and perception

  • What is happening to us as we contemplate in silence, seeing someone beyond the verbal exchange?

  • Transmission beyond words

  • Transmission through image - the portrait paintings

The Universals of Contemplation

  • From Contemplation to Connection and Conversation 

  • From the personal to the universal... Seeking deeper and deeper personal insight, that leads us round to our universal truths

  • Creating conversations thanks to the space and artefacts

What Science, Buddha Nature and Christ Consciousness Might All Have In Common

  • Cirlcing back to integrating the contrasting viewpoints of my parents and brother: As Ken Wilber says, it is difficult for someone to be 100% wrong. Where might each of them have something that withstands greater scrutiny, and can be even mapped together on the same landscape?

  • Perennial Wisdom - the comparitive religious study lens

  • Integral Theory - Ken Wilber's "The Mariage of Sense and Soul"

Action Orientations

  • Finding your voice, reclaiming your personal narrative

Literature References

  • Édouard Zafarin - Le Goût de Vivre - The real, the symbolic and the imaginary

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