— original message —
Prof Andrea Hurst Professor (Philosophy)
SARChI Chair (Identities & Social Cohesion in Africa)
Bird Street Campus Eendrag Building (Bird Street Gallery) Room 103b, First Floor (PO Box 77000, Nelson Mandela University, 6031)
Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Tel: 041 504 4848
26 March 2019
to: Alan Fogarty ALAN TOURS
Re: The Tributaries Project, on-site presentation at the Cape Recife Lighthouse
I would like to extend thanks to you on behalf of the staff and students who were part of the multi-disciplinary group from NMU that participated in the sea-to-source pilgrimage from March 22-24. We are grateful to you for arranging a tour of the lighthouse for us and taking the time to share with us your knowledge of its interesting history and details of its construction and workings.
Just to give you some background, our sea-to-source pilgrimage is part of The Tributaries Project initiated by the newly established, prestigious Arts Faculty SARChI Chair in Identities and Social Cohesion in Africa (ISCIA). This is an extension of the “Art meets Science meets Place” Project (originally led by Prof Mary Duker of the Nelson Mandela University Visual Arts Department). The primary purpose of The Tributaries Project is to promote cross disciplinary co-operative engagement and creative activity in order to understand, and find creative ways to address, social and environmental problems /challenges. The emphasis is on the connections between ecological and social problems, which should be addressed together.
Under the title of The Tributaries Project, and focussing on water as a universally pressing ecological and social problem, The Tributaries Project includes:
1. A seminar series: hosted by ISCIA in conjunction with the Department of Visual Arts. The aim is to create and maintain a heterotopic space of engagement where art meets philosophy meets science about water. Seminar participants will be encouraged to create individual or collaborative works in the form of recognised creative or academic outputs, and to engage in environmental and social activism.
2. A sea-to source water pilgrimage: Multidisciplinary participants commit to a 3 day pilgrimage from sea to source, and to the creation of a response in the form of a recognised creative or academic output. For 2019, we have planned 3 such pilgrimages, 12 participants per journey.
3. An end of year event/exhibition: All outputs from the seminar series and pilgrimages will be collected, exhibited and/or presented at the end of the year in the Bird Street Gallery and archived in an exhibition catalogue.
The participants in our first sea-to-source pilgrimage, all benefitted greatly from your on-site presentation at the Cape Recife Lighthouse. It helped us understand more about human/ocean interactions. But more than this, climbing the 101 stairs to the top also provided an illuminating and significant moment of experiential learning for many of us. The sense of being contained in a tiny glass case facing out towards a vast ocean reduced and relativized our very being as humans. This is the kind of learning that does not take place within the confines of a lecture hall.
Thanks once again for your contribution towards making the pilgrimage an extremely significant experience for all those who participated in it. We would like to repeat the visit with different groups in June and in September this year, and would very much appreciate your continued contribution to its success. We will make contact closer to the time. I know you were taking pictures yourself, but I have included a few additional pictures that you might enjoy. Yours sincerely,
Prof Andrea Hurst