The science of art – the art of science

Patrons: Professor Richard Dawkins • Professor V. S. Ramachandran • Professor Semir Zeki • Rita Carter 

Art and Mind produces festivals and other events which explore what light the brain sciences can throw on contemporary culture. These events are aimed at the general public and comprise a combination of talks, performance and exhibitions. This website holds an archive of previous events, speakers and performers and distributes news of Art and Mind activities and other related items of interest.

Garry Kennard

Director, Art and Mind


A new book by Garry Kennard


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An open letter to the director of Tate Britain

This letter was sent to Dr Penelope Curtis, director of Tate Britain, on 6 December 2014. Although addressing what I see as problems with that particular gallery display, I believe the issues raised have a much wider application, not only in the visual arts but in a wider cultural setting. And I believe they are of profound importance.


The correspondence may be read here:

Tate Britain letter

Tate Britain director’s reply and Garry Kennard’s response

Reader’s responses to the original open letter


Two essays by Garry Kennard.

These essays have appeared in my book ‘Essays and Images’ (now awaiting a reprint). They have not appeared on the web. I thought I would make them available here as they are pertinent to the science/art dialogue being thrashed out in the Pinker/McGilchrist/Kennard series available below.

The first deals with my take on our present existential situation.

Man in a dark room: the shadows of perception

The second deals with how this should effect art and our perceptions of it.

The ends of art

Please click on a title for the essay.


Science and the Humanities: reconciliation or divorce?

Steven Pinker, Psychologist/Cognitive Scientist, Cold Spring Harbor, NY 6.1.09Some weeks ago Professor Steven Pinker published an essay called ‘Science is not your enemy: An impassioned plea to neglected novelists, embattled professors and tenure-less historians’. It can be read in full on the New Republic website at  It argues for greater ties between science and the arts, suggesting that both the sciences and, in particular, the humanities have had serious problems communicating with each other and that is time for a rapprochement. Those of you who know the history of Art and Mind and similar projects may find this a little old hat. See our News page for a physical demonstration. The article has brought forth some strong reactions, most notably from Iain McGilchrist, author of magisterial ‘The Master and his Emissary’. McGilchrist has published a shortened version of his reply in the LA Review of Books, but he has given kind permission for the Art and Mind to reproduce the entire text on this website. You can find the full text here:

iain_mcgilchristA reply to Steven Pinker by Iain McGilchist

Iain McGilchrist’s website is at:

GK in hatwebA reply to Iain McGilchrist by Garry Kennard

I would be happy to place additions to these arguments on this website if anyone cares to join in  the debate. I will referee and monitor any further contributions. Concise replies would be appreciated.