Cultural Warfare and the American Revolution (Franklin, West and Morse Revisited)

In this lecture delivered as part of the Rising Tide Foundation series “Towards an Age of Creative Reason”, Matthew Ehret introduces the fight to establish a cultural revolution in the arts and sciences initiated by Benjamin Franklin, and a small international network of co-conspirators of the 18th century which was then understood to be the vital…

Sparks of a New Renaissance in Painting Emerge from China

By Matthew Ehret It is rare to see new artistic movements arise. It is even rarer that such artistic revolutions manage to respect the best traditions of the past while at the same time infuse something new and improved into society. The fatal error made by many innovators attempting to break with the often stultifying…

How the Hudson River School of Canadian Painting was Derailed

At a historical inflection point during the American Civil War, it was uncertain what Canada would become… would we become an independent republic, or a part of Lincoln’s America or would we remain a Northern anti-American confederacy under British control? (Britain’s other confederacy did fail in 1865 after all). Nowhere was this battle over our…

Symposium: Rediscovering the Infinite Through Classical Art

The Rising Tide Foundation presents the Symposium: Rediscovering the Infinite Through Classical Art, which opened with a presentation by Cynthia Chung on Shakespeare and the use of tragedy in elevating an audience’s knowledge of human nature in order to break free from tragic dynamics within us. This was followed by a lecture delivered by Matthew…

Why Must Aesthetics Govern A Society Worthy Of Political Freedom? Ask the CIA

By Matthew Ehret In the mid-1990s, a series of exposés featured on the London Independent and elsewhere brought a dark secret to light. Many were startled by the revelation that the entire evolution of 20th century modern art was directed in large measure by the CIA! This not only included the direct financing of abstract painters like Jackson Pollock…

Unifying Spirit between East and West: Giuseppe Castiglione (1688-1766), Jesuit painter in the Forbidden City.

By Matthew Ehret “In pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative, we should ensure that when it comes to different civilizations, exchange will replace estrangement, mutual learning will replace clashes, and coexistence will replace a sense of superiority. This will boost mutual understanding, mutual respect and mutual trust among different countries” -Xi Jinping, Belt and Road…

Russia Before the Revolution: A Voyage Along the Silk Road in Colour

Sergey Mikhaylovich Prokudin-Gorsky (1863 – 1944) was a Russian chemist and photographer. He is best known for his pioneering work in colour photography, in particular, his colour portrait of Leo Tolstoy. It was this fame that, in 1909, brought him to the attention of Tsar Nicholas II who would provide funding and the authority for Prokudin-Gorsky to…

To What Purpose do We Seek the Beautiful?

Class by Cynthia Chung. We all have something that comes to mind when we are speaking of beauty. It is certain that almost everyone right now is thinking of something different from the person next to them about what is beautiful. Everyone seeks out beauty, But if we cannot explain why we think something is…