Pamphlet 46 – Universalism and Creativity – 2023

How creativity expresses and enhances spirituality across the world

In May 2023 QUG held its second blended annual conference. We had a good number in Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre, probably our last conference in this venue. We were also joined by many online. We had six speakers, five at Woodbrooke and one online.

We were blessed with a wealth of ideas on our topic. Following two introductory talks on the Friday evening there were three talks on Saturday: on poetry, on creativity and nature in the Nordic tradition, and on Daoism and creativity. The concluding talk on Sunday was on the spirituality of colour.

The contributors:

Peter Varney is a retired Anglican priest and a member of Norwich Local Quaker Meeting. He has Geography and Anthropology degrees from Durham University and studied Theology at Birmingham and Ibadan Universities.  

Helen Otter is an artist who has exhibited in East Anglia, Gloucestershire and London. She has a Master’s degree in Fine Art and has worked in a variety of media.

Philip Gross is a poet who has also written novels, libretti and radio scripts. He lives in South Wales and draws on a heritage from Estonia and Cornwall.

Jaana Erkkilä  is the Vice-Rector for Research at the University of the Arts, Helsinki, and a Professor in Fine Art at the University of Lapland. She is active as an artist. She is a Quaker who lives in Finland and in the UK.

Roger Hill has an interest in Daoism which grew alongside his study of Traditional Chinese Medicine. He is a Member of Totnes Quaker Meeting and the North Finland Quaker Worship Group

Charles Monkhouse is an artist working in rural and public spaces to create permanent sculptures and temporary light works. His interest in colour stems from his work on LED installations.

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