This international seminar brings together a diverse group of scholars, individuals involved in varieties of artistic production and innovative aestheticians, to discuss the place and purpose of art in the modern world. Oriented towards the subject of beauty in particular, it asks whether beauty is still essential to art, and what role it may play in society at large and in people’s material, emotional, and spiritual lives. The aim is to set up a dialogue on this theme between theoretical reflections on aesthetics, practices of artistic production and art education, as well as between European and Indian aesthetic traditions. In setting up such a dialogue, the seminar seeks to contribute in four significant ways to cross-cultural engagement and to the existing literature on art and beauty:
to bring into greater focus the rich tradition of Indian aesthetics in Western discussions about the future of art and the role of beauty,
to encourage more serious and sustained theoretical reflection on art and beauty in current Indian scholarship,
to consider how a deeper understanding of beauty could contribute to the physical, social and economic habitat, and
to explore new pathways in art and education, ones that are more inclusive and integrated.