Tel Aviv University, course titled:

“The philosophy of Emptiness in Architecture, Art and Aesthetics in (ancient and contemporary) China and Japan”.

“…Adapt the nothing therein to the purpose in hand, and you will have the use of the room*


Absence or Emptiness (the intangible, in-betweenness, gap, space, etc) are philosophical and practical terms that are central to East Asian thought and cultures; Absence plays an essential role in the different “traditions” of Chinese philosophy (such as Laozi), Indian, Chinese (Chan) and Japanese (Zen) Buddhism and is being manifested in the material-aesthetic world through architecture (from the spatial whole to various elements, such as gates) and Chinese and Japanese art ; we will get acquainted with the different Chinese and Japanese terms that represent absence and emptiness in each of the philosophies, architectonic and other aesthetic creations and investigate as well as compare its significance and philosophical role;   do we find one, identical meaning or different roles in each and every sphere?   We will try to understand whether the absent element has its own unique ontological status or whether it is significant only within the whole “thing and its opposite” (“this and this together “or “nor “this” either “this”);  * Laozi. 1963. D.C.  


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