Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

Zen and Creativity

State of Mind ran three very popular short talk sessions on Zen, Art and Creativity, Art and the Scientific Study of Consciousnessand Consciousness: The Final Frontier - these talks were recorded and turned into podcasts by Tudor Georgescu from the Pulse Project , which are now availible for you to listen to here.

Zen and Creativity: A Conversation between Stan Rosenthal and Hugo Critchley

Chaired by Anil Seth (Sackler Center for Consciousness Sceince)

This fascinating conversation between Stan and Hugo discussed how Zen thought has shaped Stan’s practice as an artist and his views on the process of creativity, attempting to bridge Zen, art and consciousness. Stanley Rosenthal is an artist and former senior research fellow at the then Welsh National School of Medicine, and Hugo Critchley is a neuroscientist and Co-Director of Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science at the University of Sussex.

At the age of nineteen, Stanley Rosenthal was introduced to Rinzai Zen by Professor D. T. Suzuki, since when (some sixty years ago) he has attempted to follow its teachings within the constraints of Western environments. Stan has described his experience and understanding of the process of art in a number of written works, drawing on scientific knowledge and contact with neuroscientists such as Emeritus Professor Charles Butter who wrote a foreword to his latest book. Over the last five years, Stan and Hugo Critchley have had many discussions about the brain processes underlying creativity, and this led to the commissioning of a film of Stan’s ideas and work to be shown at State of Mind.