On beauty and being alive: aesthetic value as the meaning of life / / Lecture by Nick Riggle in Budapest

How to break out from the rut? Can our aesthetic and other choices improve our quality of life? How can beauty and aesthetic value help us find meaning in life? These are the questions American philosopher and former professional rollerblader Nick Riggle addresses in his popular books.

He also writes about how to become great by occasionally taking risks and breaking social norms, and by expressing our individuality in aesthetic matters, thereby vibing with others, i.e. building a community. Riggle believes that aesthetics is not just the cherry on top, but essential to making us feel our lives are meaningful.  

As a guest of MOME Global Voices, he will deliver a lecture titled On Beauty and Being Alive: Aesthetic Value as the Meaning of Life at our university.   

Currently a professor at the University of San Diego, Riggle, in his accessible philosophical and self-help books, attempts to offer a valid, contemporary value proposition that goes beyond clichés like “seize the day” and “you only live once”. At the heart of his work lies what he calls “communitarian aesthetics”, which fosters community while also emphasising the concept of freedom borrowed from Schiller as well as the notion that individuals can experience this freedom and find meaning in life through their aesthetic choices, thus elevating their existence to a higher level. 

Before turning to philosophy, Riggle travelled the world as a professional rollerblader, and was part of the rollerblader scene. Despite quitting high school due to his sporting success, he constantly read books and wrote music between competitions, realising the importance learning held for him.  Coming from a background where education was not encouraged or valued, he finished high school on his own and pursued further studies, eventually finding philosophy as his calling. Through his work, he has become one of the leading figures in contemporary analytic aesthetics, publishing in prestigious journals and frequently delivering lectures. 

Event information

Date and time: 28 May 2024, 11:00 a.m.
Venue: MOME TWO, Spatial experimental studio (T_014)

This event will be held in English.

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