Kilmahew / St Peters, Cardross.2011 - 2013
First referenced in the 17th century by the natural philosopher and scientist Robert Boyle, the concept of The Invisible College was initiated by a group of intellectuals dedicated to furthering knowledge through experimental investigation. It was described as an “institution without walls” with no fixed home or declared identity.
Nearly four centuries later, the idea of the college was recast as a future field station, an international learning network and research centre which following a successful 2 year trial will host events, activity days, lectures, interventions and symposia in creative response to the signature buildings, derelict landscape and the extensive historic grounds of Kilmahew / St Peter’s.
The college connects world class academia with activists, architects, artists, local people and other interested parties to generate new thinking and action on relevant contemporary issues.
Experimental Invisible College programme
This first 2 year research programme was built around three themed activity days for 50 people situated with the former designed landscape of Kilmahew woods. Each involved a walk to the site, an open air meal, proscribed actions, and culminated in an open public talk and sharing of the day’s findings.
A lively online hub was established with input from those taking part and remains an archival resource for any further research into the site and college.
Next steps in the reinvention of St Peter’s Seminary and Kilmahew, December 2013:
In December 2013, NVA and the Invisible College held a curated meal in the old dissection room at Summerhall in Edinburgh.
The event shared the conclusion of the research investigations and activities undertaken by the principal investigators from Edinburgh College of Art and the University of Glasgow, Ed Hollis and Hayden Lorimer, leading to an open debate regarding the future of the site.
Public Talks 2012:
Caitlin DeSilvey, University of Exeter on Orford Ness, September 2012.
Andy Wightman, writer, campaigner & researcher on Land & Democracy, June 2012.
Tilman Latz, landscape architect & co-creator of Duisberg Nord, March 2012.
Tim Edensor, academic and writer on modern ruins, March 2012.