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Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

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James Turrell: you who look

8 minutes

James Turrell’s singular quest to transform a crater into a natural-light observatory

‘Every evening we unfold the light, and every morning, fold it back, to return the blue to the sky.’

The US artist James Turrell has made a career of manipulating light and space, creating ‘new worlds’ that force viewers to confront the fluidity and fallibility of their own visual perception. Born into a conservative Quaker family, Turrell got his start building meeting houses – quiet, simple structures where Quakers are meant to ‘greet the light’. James Turrell: You Who Look is a visual and verbal paean to the artist’s celebrated career, with an emphasis on Roden Crater near Flagstaff in Arizona, a ‘place between the Earth and the cosmos’, a ‘natural-light observatory’ built into an extinct volcano – a work that has been 45 years in the making and is still unfinished.

Director: Jessica Yu

Producer: Izabela Frank

Video/Cognition & Intelligence

For millennia, we’d never seen anything like film cuts. How do we process them so easily?

7 minutes

Video/Film & Television

Why do we crave the awful futures of apocalyptic fiction?

5 minutes


Going from A to B isn’t always a straight line – but it can be very good fun

2 minutes


We have a new word for that feeling when travel makes everything new

Liam Heneghan

Essay/Cultures & Languages

Talking gibberish

The study of languages has long been prone to nonsense. Why is linguistics such a magnet for dilettantes and crackpots?

Gaston Dorren

Video/Sports & Games

How Gaelic sports became a cultural binding force in Ireland’s most diverse town

15 minutes

Idea/Stories & Literature

The 13th-century revolution that made modern poetry possible

Eric Weiskott

Essay/Stories & Literature

The coming-of-age con

How can you go about finding ‘who you really are’ if the whole idea of the one true self is a big fabrication?

Cody Delistraty

Video/Sports & Games

Looking like time travellers from a bygone era, sumo wrestlers gather for a competition

3 minutes