Talks & lectures, free events

114 events

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Middlesbrough in the Post-war Period

Learn more about how the area fared in the post-war era, from manufacturing to education to the NHS. Booking is essential.

mima – Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art

Sat 10 May

Free (ticketed) / 01642 726720

Mike McInne: The Honey Diet

Nutrition expert and chemist Mike McInne share wisdom from his book The Honey Diet, which examines the benefits of the sticky stuff, especially in comparison to refined sugars. Booking is essential.

National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh

Thu 12 Jun

Free / 0131 623 3734

  • 18:00

Mindfulness for Depression: Theory and Practice

Public lecture exploring studies behind psychological methods of treatment in depression.

Old College Lecture Theatre, Edinburgh

Wed 14 May

Free (ticketed)

Painting in Focus

Glasgow Museums curators talk about their favourite works.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Glasgow

Tue 29 Apr

Free / 0141 276 9599

Today's painting is Sir James Guthrie's In the Orchard.

  • 14:00 – 14:15

Phil Bergerson: American Artifacts – Talk and Signing

Canadian photographer Bergerson discusses his new photo book, American Artifacts, looking at modern day America and incorporating text from dystopian sci-fi writer Margaret Atwood.

Stills, Edinburgh

Thu 24 Apr

Free (ticketed) / 01620 895985

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Portrait Gallery Architecture Tours

Monthly tours of Sir Robert Rowand Anderson's splendid building. Meet in the Great Hall. Places are limited. Booking is essential.

Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh

Sat 19 Apr

Free / 0131 624 6560

  • 14:00 – 14:45

Portrait Gallery Insights

Closer looks at current exhibitions in the Gallery. Places are limited. Booking is essential.

Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh

Thu 8 May

Free / 0131 624 6560

Deputy Director Imogen Gibbon talks about the Making History exhibition.

  • 17:30 – 18:00

Portrait Gallery Thematic Tours

Thematic guided tour of Portrait Gallery exhibitions. Meet in the Grand Hall.

Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh

Sat 3 May

Free / 0131 624 6200

Former Senior Curator Susanna Kerr talks about how symbols, style and composition in a portrait are used to reveal things about the subject.

  • 14:00 – 14:45
  • 15:00 – 15:45

The Printed Image in Shakespeare's London

Dr Helen Pierce examines the use of printed images in literature and the cultural and social life of Elizabethan and Jacobean London.

New King's, Aberdeen

Tue 20 May

Free / 01224 274330

  • 19:30 – 21:00

Professor Robert Winston: The Desire to Take Medicine

The reproductive health expert and television presenter talks about the appeal of medicine in this first RCP Public Lecture. Booking is essential.

Royal College of Physicians Museum, London NW1

Wed 18 Jun

Free / 020 3075 2389

  • 18:30 – 20:00
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Revolution by the Pen: Scotland's Literary Renaissance

Author Donald Smith talks about radical themes in 20th century Scottish writing.

Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh

Wed 7 May

Hawthornden Lecture Theatre

Free / 0131 624 6200

Part of Tradfest.

  • 12:45 – 13:30

Roundtable Conversation

A discussion which develops ideas arising out of work currently at The Common Guild. Booking is essential.

The Common Guild, Glasgow

Thu 22 May

Free / 0141 428 3022

Michael Stumpf and Rhona Warwick contribute to the discussion.

SciScreen: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 or Exploiting the Genome

Dr Doug Vernimmen, Chancellor's Fellow at the Roslin Institute, introduces a screening of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 with a short talk on the science behind genetically modified organisms and its depiction in science fiction. A Q&A follows the film screening.

Cineworld Fountainpark, Edinburgh

Mon 21 Apr

Free with cinema ticket / 0871 200 2000

  • 18:30

Scotland in a Federal UK? David Torrance Sets the Agenda

What can be done – with or without independence – to make a Scotland a more equal, successful and prosperous country? David Torrance sets an agenda that draws upon the finest elements of Unionism, Nationalism, Conservatism, Liberalism and the Scottish Left. His conclusions may surprise you. Wine and light refreshments…

Blackwell's, Edinburgh

Tue 6 May

Free / 0131 622 8222

Part of TradFest.

Scotland's Storytelling Renaissance

Why has live storytelling come back into the cultural mainstream in Scotland? Is it a folk tradition or a contemporary art and why has a tech savvy generation tapped into story? Storyteller and founding Director of the Scottish Storytelling Centre, Donald Smith offers some insights and opens up the issues for discussion…

University of Edinburgh

Fri 9 May

Free / 0131 650 1000

Part of TradFest.

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Scottish Independence Referendum Q&A with Alistair Carmichael

Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael hosts this Q&A focusing on issues surrounding Scotland's constitutional future and the September referendum.

Murrayfield Parish Church, Edinburgh

Thu 24 Apr

Free / 0131 244 9066

  • 19:30 – 21:00

Scottish Opera: Madama Butterfly Unwrapped

A free, hour-long introduction to Puccini's tale of doomed love. Hear highlights from the show, meet the principal characters and find out more about the production in this Unwrapped session.

Eden Court Theatre, Inverness

Fri 6 Jun

Free / 01463 234234

Edinburgh Festival Theatre

Fri 9 May

Free / 0131 529 6000

His Majesty's Theatre, Aberdeen

Tue 13 May

Free / 01224 641122

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Seeing God …

A series of talks examining different traditions, objects and places and how these things are associated with different faiths across the world.

St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art, Glasgow

Sun 4 May

Free / 0141 276 1625

For 'Seeing God in the Desert', Professor David Jasper examines the desert as a theme in Christian art and literature up until present day.

  • 14:00 – 15:00

Sun 1 Jun

Free / 0141 276 1625

Today's lecture is 'Seeing God at the Necopolis', former parish priest George Pattison talks about the many things burial sites can represent.

  • 14:00 – 15:00

A Series of World War One Talks

Learn about different aspects of WW I through talks and participatory sessions.

Queensferry High School, South Queensferry

Wed 23 Apr

Free / 0131 529 5576

Port Edgar – The story of the Royal Navy's Destroyer base at Port Edgar during World War One.

  • 18:30 – 19:30

Spiralling Anxiety: Hysteria Transformed in the Work of Louise Bourgeois

Artist and writer Elizabeth Manchester talks about the ways in which Louise Bourgeois plays with the notion of the woman as hysteric.

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art One, Edinburgh

Mon 28 Apr

Free / 0131 624 6200

  • 12:45 – 13:30
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Spiritual Healing – Medical Viewpoint

Dr Gerhard Blättner MD investigates the stories of people who reportedly overcame illness through their spirituality.

Sidney Stringer Academy, Coventry

Sat 17 May

Drama Studio 2

Free (donations welcome) / 01384 390085

  • 19:00 – 21:00

Spotlight On: Power of Ten

Dr Tacye Phillipson, curator of the Power of Ten exhibition, illuminates the career of mathematician John Napier and speaks on the relevance of his ideas (including logarithms) today.

National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

Thu 1 May

Free (ticketed) / 0300 123 6789

Still Life with Bird's Nest by Jan van Huysum

Senior Curator Tico Seifert talks about this 18th century Dutch flower painting.

Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh

Fri 23 May

Free / 0131 624 6200

  • 12:45 – 13:15

Stop the Traffic: Is Prevention Possible?

As the trafficking of people makes headlines, Stop the Traffik and JustShare discuss what prevention is happening and whether a real-world difference is in fact being made for those who suffer trafficking.

St Mary-Le-Bow Church, London EC2V

Wed 30 Apr

Free / 020 7248 5139

  • 18:00 – 19:00

The Strange Case of James Hogg – The 'Ettrick Shepherd'

Senior Outreach Officer Robin Baillie talks about the uneasy relationship between James Hogg and Walter Scott.

Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh

Wed 21 May

Free / 0131 624 6200

  • 12:45 – 13:15
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