On Friday 13th-Monday 16th May, Postgraduate students from across the Arts and Humanities at Dundee came together to share and celebrate their work, with the ‘Dwelling in Extremis‘ Symposium and Exhibition. There were 65 attendees across the day, and speakers dialled in from China, Greece, and other far-flung locations. What was particularly striking was the way the students dwelt with the theme: each speaker eloquently addressed it, and MFA-AH students exhibiting work did an excellent job of engaging the theme through diverse media.
Some of the themes explored included how are we to live in these extreme times? What is it like to live – to dwell even – in what seems to be a constant of extreme circumstances?

‘Dwelling’, whether in the spatial or temporal sense, seems to imply a sense of stability. So what happens to dwelling in an age when we are ever more conscious of extremes?  We can readily name all sorts of extremes that have become topical for us: comfort/terror, local/global, wealth/inequality, short-term/long-term, left/right, secular/fundamental… But how can we learn to live with them, to dwell with them?

The exhibition included an intriguing series of panels (on terror, fake news, emotion, and philosophical approaches to dwelling), and an exploration of not only what it is that we find ourselves confronted with, day in, day out, but also how we can engage with and make sense of it, and how it can affect us.

Thanks to all the staff and students involved. For more information on the Arts and Humanities MFA see https://www.dundee.ac.uk/postgraduate/art-humanities.

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