Venice Symposia 2017


AoN Symposium


May 11th, 2017
3:30 pm – 6 pm

on the occasion of the 57th Venice Biennale of Art 


This year’s AoN symposium explores art’s transformative capacity and the poetics of wonder. The experience of wonder arises when we are transported from our usual modes of interaction into an alternative realm, where things are imbued with new meaning and new possibility. Wonder can be induced by spectacle, ritual practices, but also poetic minimalism—by anything that defamiliarizes us with the commonplace or evokes a sense of reverence and mystery.

This AoN symposium invites artists and curators that have employed strategies of wonder or enchantment in their works and exhibitions. They will discuss their practices and engage with neuroscientist, psychologist and philosophers that have worked on intense aesthetic experiences and emotions such as awe and wonder and their relevance for our life, for art, and for science.


© Ivana Franke Studio „Retreat into Darkness. Towards a Phenomenology of the Unknown“, ScheringStiftung, Berlin



3.30 pm

welcome and introduction
Elena Agudio & Joerg Fingerhut (Association for Neuroesthetics)


3.40 pm

first round of presentations

Jesse Prinz & Joerg Fingerhut (philosophers)
Georges Adéagbo (artist) & Stephan Köhler (art historian and curator)
Stefanie Hessler (curator)
Ed Vessel (neuroscientist)

(short break)


5.00 pm

second round of presentations

Ivana Franke (artist) & Elena Agudio (art historian and curator)
Beatrice de Gelder (neuroscientist)
Jelili Atiku (artist)
Jeremy Shaw (artist)



Association of Neuroesthetics

The Einstein Group “Consciousness, Emotions, Values”



Serra dei Gardini, Viale Giuseppe Garibaldi, Venice, Italy

See Map



Georges Adéagbo (artist)

Elena Agudio (art historian and curator)

Jelili Atiku (artist)

Joerg Fingerhut (philosopher)

Ivana Franke (artist)

Beatrice de Gelder (neuroscientist)

Stefanie Hessler (curator)

Stephan Köhler (art historian and curator)

Jesse Prinz (philosopher)

Jeremy Shaw (artist)

Ed Vessel (neuroscientist)