Desert of Dunes, Dreamers, and Dramas: The Sahara as Artistic Muse with Eamonn Gearon

Desert of Dunes, Dreamers, and Dramas: The Sahara as Artistic Muse with Eamonn Gearon


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The Sahara has inspired the artistic and cultural life of the West for millennia, and this eye-opening presentation allows us to journey there while staying at home.

Whether traveling in person or through the imagined deserts of North Africa, poets, painters, filmmakers, and other dreamers have always been drawn to the world’s largest desert. Vital to both the oracles of Ancient Greece and the high priests of Hollywood, North African landscapes have produced stunning prehistoric rock art and canvases by Matisse; tales of love, loss, and war; and brought together such unlikely bedfellows as Snoopy, Luke Skywalker, and The Little Prince.

Led by an expert on the history of the middle east, Eamonn Gearon, this interactive seminar will explore how the Sahara Desert has inspired artists and writers. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding of this mythic landscape.

This conversation is part of a three-part series with Eamonn Gearon. Each session is designed as a stand-alone seminar as well as part of the series.

Eamonn Gearon is an author, public speaker, and professor of history who lived and worked across the greater Middle East – from Kabul to Casablanca – for more than 20 years. As well as living in the Sahara with the Bedu, Eamonn did a number of solo, camel-powered expeditions … and never lost money when re-selling a camel! The author of three lecture series on Middle Eastern history and culture for The Great Courses, Eamonn also designed and is responsible for delivering Middle East and North Africa (MENA) area studies training for both the British and American governments: the FCDO & US Department of State.

This conversation is suitable for all ages.

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

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