Chasing reality (and beauty) at the Copernicus Festival

Yes, reality must have accelerated too much to keep up with it – leaving this blog in a slow lane. But nothing was lost. Records of the past have been kept – and will be revealed in subsequent posts.

First – Cracow and the 3rd edition of Copernicus Festival. Three of “my” real life Pioneers were invited by the organizers (Jacek Ślusarczyk from Tygodnik Powszechny was behind it) of this intellectual multithreaded May feast. 

Greg and Virginia Chaitin flew straight from Brazil, Julian Barbour came from a pre-Brexit England – all of them in order to discuss the meaning and role of the notion of beauty… no, no, I should say Beauty – in science. And in this thing we call life too, of course.

Having a spare morning we hiked with Julian in Kraków-Częstochowa Upland – guided by Piotr Seweryn, and chased by the rain which made it even more fun, considering the absolute lack of tread on the noble physicist’s shoes. We shot this short promotional video by the Prądnik river (of time).

Yes, yes, you’ve guessed it right: Julian Barbour’s Bottom’s Dream had its DVD premiere – this July! And Against the Method a month later! Things are happening, don’t they?

Both movies can be purchased here: sklep.polityka.pl. VOD premieres soon.

Here’s an Against the Method DVD trailer. Watch and check for yourselves why wearing a hat in a right way is wrong.

Below you’ll find Julian’s and Greg’s lectures, and the discussion they took part in, joined by Michał Heller, an astrophysicist, cosmologists, philosopher, the head of the Copernicus Center, and also the spiritus movens of the festival.

Those three hour long events are definitely worth watching in full extent.

Both Bottom’s Dream and Against the Method had their screenings (followed by solid discussions) at Mikro, a cuddly shabby cinema that somehow manages to stand the wave of commercialization and gentrification.

Here are some great photos – courtesy of Kamila Zarembska-Szatan.

In order to prove that Pioneers are real people enjoying both intellectual and more visceral, night pleasures I dare to attach photos taken at a retro bar (which location I can’t reveal without killing you all). It’s a place which you can be exposed to by a local only.

No soft drinks there.

Ah, yes – and there was a sunny coda in Warsaw: Greg and Virginia embarked a pendolino train to pay a sentimental visit to Mokotów, the place where Virginia spent some of the best years of her childhood. Come more often! 

To Virginia, Greg, Julian, and the whole Cracow embodied by the people too numerous (Jacek Ślusarczyk, Bartosz Brożek, Diana Sałacka, Bartosz Janik, Piotr Krasnowolski, Marta then Czubajewska, Piotr Seweryn and many others) to be listed here: that was a splendid May week – and a proof that something as ethereal as a movie can have such a wonderful and memorable side effects.

Thank you.

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