Arts, nature & the environment

Join us to explore some of the many connections between the Arts, nature and the environment, through our short online and in-person courses.

Our wide-ranging Culture and Humanities programme spans from the Ice Age to today, and across different cultures.

You can explore ‘Art and Environment in Ice Age Europe’, learn about animals in Renaissance Art, or think about environment and politics in indigenous art today.  You can consider how Romantic poetry finds new resonance through ‘ecocritical’ readings, or study genre-busting literary non-fiction about the connections between walking and writing in urban, rural and desert landscapes.

You can also complement your studies with courses from our Science and Nature programme, including courses on botany, trees, geology, the Amazon, and the science of climate change.

Explore our exciting programme below!

Items 1-15 of 17

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  1. Climate change: a brief introduction
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 1 Dec 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Martin Jorgensen
    We hear and read about climate change every day. Combining lecture and seminar elements, this short introductory course will explore the history and basics of the climate changes most climate scientists agree are taking place (session 1) as well as engage in a discussion about how these manifest themselves in global challenges and humanity’s responses to these against the backdrop of global politics (session 2).



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £49.00 Senior fee £49.00 Concession £25.00
  2. Friday lates: land art, an introduction
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 2 Dec 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Francesca Curtis
    Learn how and why early environmentalist artists sculpted with lightening, sun and earth. Join us for an introduction to land art.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £12.00
  3. Art and environment in Ice Age Europe
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 12 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Discover the artistic treasures of our most remote past, when our ancestors in the Ice Age created beautiful cave paintings and astounding sculpted works.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £87.00 Concession £71.00
  4. Currents in Indigenous contemporary art
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 19 Jan 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Francesca Cavallo
    Join us for a broad introduction to Contemporary Indigenous Art. Explore the wide-ranging Indigenous artists driving the cultural mobilisation for climate justice from Oceania to the Americas and from the Arctic Circle to the South of Africa.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £109.00 Concession £71.00
  5. New Nature Writing in fiction and poetry
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  David Barnes
    In the last 15 years, a new type of nature writing emerged in the UK. It was personal, engaging, and examined the natural world and the environment in fresh and interesting ways. It promised to reconnect a younger generation with the world outside, and to raise awareness of ecological issues in an emotionally resonant way. Includes novels, poetry and memoir by Seamus Heaney, W.G. Sebald, Alice Oswald, Helen Macdonald. Elizabeth-Jane Burnett, Kathleen Jamie.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £90.00
    Rating:
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  6. Geology and London
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 5 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Charles Clarke
    Explore how the geology below greater London has shaped its landscapes, infrastructure and built environment, making it such a fascinating and visually diverse city; look at stone types and their effects on the buildings around us.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
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  7. Lunchtime lecture: Winter Sun: Nancy Holt's land art
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 8 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sarah Jaffray
    Join us for an introduction to the work of Nancy Holt, one of the foundational figures of the land art movement.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £8.00 Concession £7.00
  8. Introduction to botany
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 11 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Letta Jones
    A practical course ideal for those who are new to ‘in the field’ botany. Observation of the range of places plants grow



    and how they are categorised into groups will be our focus.



    Explore plant names and get to know more about the diversity and range from tiny ground hugging plants to huge trees.



    Three Saturday sessions, meeting at City lit in the morning and a local botany walk in the afternoon.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £110.00
    Rating:
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  9. An introduction to ornithology with birdwatching
    Course start date:  Wed 22 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Brenna Boyle
    Immerse yourself in the fascinating world of birds. This short course has a broad scope: from evolution and global diversity to bird behaviour and song. Learn identification techniques in the classroom, then try out your skills during three guided fieldtrips to London locations.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £70.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  10. Environment and politics in contemporary art
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 22 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Francesca Curtis
    A short course exploring how contemporary artists in Southeast Asia examine the politics of today’s ecological crisis.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £99.00 Concession £64.00
  11. Representing nature in early modern Europe
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 3 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the links between the visual image and ideas of nature in early modernity (c.1500-1750). At this time, tools like the microscope were visualising nature in new ways, changes were afoot in how humans related to animals, and the environments of Asia and the Americas were becoming more familiar to Europeans. We will focus on how artists and skilled artisans engaged with these subjects.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £87.00 Concession £71.00
  12. Animals in Renaissance art
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 6 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Lydia Goodson
    Beasts are everywhere in the art of the Renaissance. Discover why they are there and how artists created the painted and sculpted menageries of both real and imaginary creatures that populate Renaissance art.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £45.00
  13. Bird identification by sight and song
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 18 Mar 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Verity Miles
    Sometimes we hear birds before we see them. Find out more about identifying birds by sound as well as sight. Refresh your knowledge of the natural history of birds and what to look for to distinguish different species by sight, song and behaviour.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  14. Natural history journaling
    Course start date:  Wed 26 Apr 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Brenna Boyle
    Natural history journaling is the insightful and relaxing process of closely observing and recording nature. There are no fixed rules to creating a journal; you could choose to write, draw, photograph or film the nature you encounter. No experience or skills are needed, just come along and try it out. This course promises enjoyment, relaxation, ecological learning and immersion in nature.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £71.00 Concession £45.00
  15. Plants, people, politics and profits: the Brazilian Amazon through the lens of ethnobotany
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 9 May 2023

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Sandra Carvalho, Yasmin Hales, Aleksandra Kaye
    What is ethnobotany and bio-piracy and why are they important? Bringing together horticulture, anthropology, history and political science, this course focuses on human-nature relationships, using Latin America as the prism. Join our four tutors to learn more about how humanity’s complex relationships with nature can be a new way of understanding.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00

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