Kairos Events

Wednesday January 25th
KICKING OFF THE NEW YEAR with VANESSA CHAMBERLIN and BABY SOL
We still have some places left for our event tomorrow, hosted by arts club Vout-O-Reenee’s. – an evening of inspiration, entertainment, food and wine to celebrate the start of our 2023 calendar.

Artist and theologian Vanessa Chamberlin will lead a discussion about hope as the antidote to optimism. Hope as a way of walking through the world, in contrast to hope as directed towards outcome

In times of despair and dullness, the ancient Jewish prophets would energise people to new hope. But in times of enforced hope and anxious denial, they would stand their ground and name what was death-like in their cultures and communities. Both were hopeful practices.

Vanessa will help us reflect on what the ‘way of hope’ might look like for each of us this year.  We’ll then explore whether the Jewish-Christian tradition might have anything helpful to offer us as we continue to reimagine our place in the world.

After a break for free vegetarian food that we’ll all eat together, and drinks for sale at the bar, rising star and Paloma Faith backing singer, Baby Sol will sing a few songs for us. 

Kairos director Zoë Blackler will also talk briefly about the themes that have emerged since we launched in October and our ambitions for Kairos in 2023. As well as expanding our public programme of talks, screenings and entertainment, we’re planning more in-depth workshops and members’ socials. Come and find out more and tell us what you’d like from Kairos. 

We have a strict limit on numbers, so please book in advance as we can’t guarantee there will be tickets left on the door.

Location: Vout-O-Reenee’s, The Crypt, 30 Prescot Street, London, E1 8BB
6.30pm-11pm
Tickets: £5 members, £15 non-members.
Includes vegetarian food. Drinks for sale at the bar.
Book via Ticket Tailor

Wednesday February 1st
BRUNO LATOUR: A POLITICS OF THE EARTH with NOORTJE MARRES
Sociologist Noortje Marres, who studied under the late Bruno Latour, will explore his work on ecological politics – in particular his vision for a politics of the earth and his call for a new ecological class to seize the political reins and guide us through the polycrisis. Noortje will also advocate for “ecology” as the best frame through which to re-imagine human society’s relationship with the natural world. And she will chart the rise of a politics of nature as a broad, historical shift in paradigm: one that over the last century has taken the form of a conflict between utopian thinking – the struggle to “burst the existing order” and create a better world – and ideology – which serves to justify the status quo but is no longer in touch with reality.
Location: Vout-O-Reenee’s, The Crypt, 30 Prescot Street, London, E1 8BB
6.30pm for drinks, talk starts at 7pm.
Tickets: £5 members, £15 non-members. Includes vegetarian food.

Book via Ticket Tailor

Wednesday February 8th
DEBUNKING ECONOMICS with STEVE KEEN

Economist Steve Keen, who predicted the 2008 crash, will guide us through everything that’s wrong with conventional economics, explain how it’s driving the climate and nature crises, and offer an alternative vision for our global financial system.
Location: Vout-O-Reenee’s, The Crypt, 30 Prescot Street, London, E1 8BB
6.30pm for drinks, talk starts at 7pm.
Tickets: £5 members, £15 non-members. Includes vegetarian food.
Book via Ticket Tailor

Wednesday March 22nd
BOX OF DARKNESS: THE TRANSFORMATIVE POWER OF GRIEF with LIZ JENSEN

“Someone I know once gave me a box of darkness.
It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift.”
From The Uses of Sorrow, Mary Oliver

It’s human instinct to turn away from the things we fear most. But to shut out the pain of grief – past, present or anticipatory – is to miss an opportunity for radical and growth and healing. Drawing parallels between personal grief and ecological grief, Liz Jensen – novelist, founder-member of XR Writers Rebel, and mother of the young activist Iggy Fox, who died suddenly in February 2020 – reflects on the importance of honouring our rawest and most disturbing feelings in order to find resilience, empowerment, and imaginative new ways to inhabit this unprecedented era. 
Location: TBD
6.30pm for drinks, talk starts at 7pm.
Tickets: £5 members, £15 non-members. Includes vegetarian food.
Book via Ticket Tailor

Wednesday April 12th
THE RIGHTS OF NATURE with CÉSAR RODRÍGUEZ-GARAVITO

Colombia lawyer César Rodríguez-Garavito will be visiting London and at Kairos to discuss his work on the rights of nature.
Location: TBD
6.30pm for drinks, talk starts at 7pm.
Tickets: £5 members, £15 non-members. Includes vegetarian food.

Book via Ticket Tailor

A NOTE ABOUT OUR TICKET PRICING
We’re introducing a new pricing structure for 2023. Signed up members will now receive a greater reduction on the ticket price, while non-members will be asked to pay slightly more. Kairos is a not-for-profit passion project and anything we take in ticket sales is solely to cover our costs and help expand our programme. We aim to be as inclusive as possible, so if you’re struggling to afford a ticket, please get in touch and we’ll see what we can do (events@Kairos.London).
If you’d like to apply for membership and benefit from reduced ticket prices, please email membership@Kairos.London. Before we can consider your application, however, we do ask that you attend at least one event so you can get a feel for Kairos and we can get to know you.
Membership is priced at £120 p/a for those who can afford it, £60 p/a for the less well off, free for the under 30s and those from the Global South, and £120 p/a + discretionary donation for those who would like to help subsidise membership for the less well off. As with ticket prices, please get in touch if you’re struggling to afford even the lower rate and we will do our best to help.
If you’ve previously enquired about membership but haven’t got round to returning your application form, or if you have been accepted by haven’t yet paid your dues, we encourage you to do so.  

For news of our events, sign up to our newsletter, join our WhatsApp group or follow us on Twitter @KairosClub or Mastodon @Kairos@mstdn.social

Past Events

Wednesday December 21st
WINTER SOLSTICE STORY-TELLING with RUTH PADEL AND MORE

As an alternative winter celebration, we held an evening of story-telling on the longest night of the year. We shared stories about darkness and renewal, loss and hope, collapse and re-emergence in a beautiful candle-lit venue. Poet Ruth Padel read from Watershed, her forthcoming collection about water and climate, and Kairos director Zoë Blackler shared a Hungarian folk tale. There was a story of peace and reconciliation in Columbia. a fable by William Morris, a poem by Toni Spencer, the Hanukka story, and a reflection on grief and kairos by Liz Jenson. We also discussed the power of the imagination and the need to find new stories to help us through the challenges ahead. 

Thursday December 1st
PARTY: FAREWELL HOLBORN VIADUCT

A CELEBRATION of an amazing first two months for Kairos, a THANK YOU to everyone who helped made it such a success and a FAREWELL to our temporary first home. We weren’t together long, Holborn Viaduct, but you have a special place in our hearts and we’ll miss you. The evening featured Zander mixing the cocktails, Ben and Jo spinning the vinyl, and the Sibyl waiting in her cave to answer people’s questions about their fate.

Monday November 28th
SCREENING OF ‘ONCE YOU KNOW” with director EMMANUEL CAPPELLIN 

A second screening “Once You Know” by Emmanuel Cappellin (2020, 105mins)  – a personal exploration of what it means to emotionally accept the truth about climate change, which received glowing reviews. Emmanuel, who was visiting London, was with us in person to lead a post-screening discussion.

SYNOPSIS: Today, like a ship entering the storm, industrial civilisation faces the first symptoms of energy depletion and climate change induced collapse. ONCE YOU KNOW asks the disturbing questions: Are there better ways of collapsing than others? What is meaningful work on the way down? 
Director Emmanuel Cappellin is obsessed with how to best respond personally and collectively. His quest leads him around the world to meet five of the world’s leading climate scientists and energy experts. They share with him the truth, chaos, and hope in their work. They allow him to challenge everything he took for granted – from growth-based democracies to personal freedoms.
This odyssey brings him back to himself and to Saillans, his small mountain village. In this life-size, open sky laboratory, everything becomes once again possible: having a child, redefining questions of social justice, implementing participatory democracy, starting an energy transition…The first steps, perhaps, towards some kind of collective resilience.

Friday November 25th
SUPPER CLUB with MARK VERNON
With Mark Vernon on William Blake, London’s greatest poet and prophet, also a tremendous thinker with a keen diagnosis of what was unfolding in his time, which is also our time. Blake understood the human yearning for more, the multifaceted inner life of places and ages, the mixture of ecologies within which, and with which, we live.

This talk and discussion included an introduction to some of Blake’s most punchy intuitions, thoughts on how his insights matter, and time to explore and question what he might be saying to us now.

Food was provided by Super Nature, an experimental kitchen based in Hackney with a strong environmental agenda. Their team of chefs, foragers, artists, activists and cultivators work in collaboration to address problems with our global food system and the way we eat. Every creation is a celebration of hyper-seasonal produce using an innovative ‘root to fruit’ zero waste approach, using plant based whole and raw foods sourced from local farmers practicing minimal intervention and regenerative agriculture methods.

Wednesday November 23rd
ENTRAPMENT AND ESCAPE with ANOUCHKA GROSE
Writer and psychoanalyst Anouchka Grose explored the psychological complexity of mourning capitalism while still living inside it, through a series of YouTube videos about shopping. The videos were accompanied by comment from Anouchka and followed by a group discussion chaired by Josh Appignanesi.

Wednesday November 16th
NAVIGATING THE GLOBAL PHASE SHIFT, with NAFEEZ AHMED
The world is going through an extraordinary convergence of ecological, energy, economic, geopolitical and social crises. But at their root, this is a single global systemic crisis that at worst threatens the destruction of planetary life support systems. Simultaneously, we are seeing the emergence of exponential technologies, some of which might offer new ways of solving our biggest challenges, but some of which may even worsen them. How do these different crises interact? Why are they worsening at the same time? 

In this talk, systems theorist and investigative journalist Nafeez Ahmed used the concept of a “global phase shift” – among other systems lenses and tools – to aid understanding of how to navigate a unique moment in human and planetary history, the transformation of the global system in which the old industrial paradigm is collapsing, as a new system is emerging. What lies ahead could encompass collapse, dystopia or renewal: but to breakthrough to renewal, we must be able to see both risks and possibilities, so that we can make better choices.
With vegetarian food and drink

Tuesday November 1st
DESPAIR, ACCEPTANCE, TRANSFORMATION
: “Once You Know” + Caroline Hickman 
Screening of “Once You Know” by Emmanuel Cappellin (2020, 105mins)  – a personal exploration of what it means to emotionally accept the truth about climate change, which received glowing reviews

SYNOPSIS: Today, like a ship entering the storm, industrial civilisation faces the first symptoms of energy depletion and climate change induced collapse. ONCE YOU KNOW asks the disturbing questions: Are there better ways of collapsing than others? What is meaningful work on the way down? 
Director Emmanuel Cappellin is obsessed with how to best respond personally and collectively. His quest leads him around the world to meet five of the world’s leading climate scientists and energy experts. They share with him the truth, chaos, and hope in their work. They allow him to challenge everything he took for granted – from growth-based democracies to personal freedoms.
This odyssey brings him back to himself and to Saillans, his small mountain village. In this life-size, open sky laboratory, everything becomes once again possible: having a child, redefining questions of social justice, implementing participatory democracy, starting an energy transition…The first steps, perhaps, towards some kind of collective resilience.

Followed by a presentation by climate psychologist and psychotherapist Caroline Hickman who explored how depression, rage and despair are our strongest allies in transformative, resilient action. 
With vegetarian food and drink.

Saturday October 29th, 6.30pm for an aperitif
INTRODUCING THE KAIROS SUPPER CLUB – WITH CARNE ROSS
For our first ever SUPPER CLUB, we were delighted to have as our guest speaker Carne Ross, writer and founder of Independent Diplomat, the world’s first non-profit diplomatic advisory group.

Carne talked about the ideas in his new book, What is to be done? which propose answers to the ‘polycrisis’ in the environment, democracy and society, and offered a radical but practical alternative to the current model of liberal democracy and capitalism.

Supper was cooked by Super Nature, an experimental kitchen based in Hackney with a strong environmental agenda. Their team of chefs, foragers, artists, activists and cultivators work in collaboration to address problems with our global food system and the way we eat. Every creation is a celebration of hyper-seasonal produce using an innovative ‘root to fruit’ zero waste approach, using plant-based whole and raw foods sourced from local farmers practicing minimal intervention and regenerative agriculture methods. 

The Kairos Supper Club is a monthly series in which an original thinker presents their ideas before a sit-down supper. Come with a friend or alone as we eat all together at one big table. Tickets £30 per person including a cocktail on arrival and 3-course supper. Bring your own bottle.

Tuesday October 25th, 6.30pm (discussion at 7pm)
IN CONVERSATION: ACTIVISM
Author and campaigner Anthea Lawson and reader in political sociology Graeme Hayes discussed why everyone isn’t in the streets, and what history and a deeper understanding of the dynamics of activism can teach us about how people mobilise. With reference to soup-throwing.
* There was also be a rare chance to see New York-based guerrilla theatre group Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping, accompanied by the UK Stop Shopping Choir
With vegetarian food and drink.

Sunday October 23rd, 2.30pm
SUNDAY FILM SALON
For our first film salon we screened L’Argent (Money) by Robert Bresson (1983) in the Kairos cinema room. It was followed by a presentation written by Professor Nicky Marsh from University of Southhampton whose work examines the ways that economic ideas – like money, risk, credit and debt – become represented in the culture at large, to form part of our imaginary and our fantasy. Nicky couldn’t attend in person due to illness, so her talked was delivered by Devorah Baum and was followed by an animated discussion on the power of money as our controlling metaphor.
The Kairos Film Salon is a monthly series curated by Josh Appignanesi, pairing provocative and life-changing films with special guest speakers, drawing all participants into guided conversation around that month’s theme.
With tea and cake.

Tuesday October 18th
THE KAIROS CINEMA PREVIEW
We opened the Kairos Cinema, with two short talks and a mini-screening.
As Amitav Ghosh said, “the climate crisis is a crisis of the imagination”. So how can the stories we tell help us to think again?
*Film-maker Josh Appignanesi spoke about that elusive thing we call change and what role the arts have to play in it. He also explained the thinking behind our monthly Sunday afternoon Film Salon.
*Kairos’s director Zoë Blackler talked about how sci-fi can help us reimagine the world and why she’s proud to be a Trekkie.
Followed by an episode from a classic sci-fi series (45mins)
With vegetarian food and drink.

Tuesday October 11th
INTRODUCTION TO KAIROS

With short talks and complimentary drinks and vegetarian food.
Nick Anim, researcher of contemporary movements at UCL and social justice activist spoke about how to build
cross-movement coalitions to counter the forces that divide us.
Jonathan Rowson, philosopher and founding director of Perspectiva talked about how Western society has turned
consumption, a basic human act, into consumerism, a prevailing cultural ideology, and asked us to imagine a world
beyond consumerism.

Thursday October 6th
MEMBERS BOYB DRINKS NIGHT

With a performance by singers Sam Lee and Jessie Lloyd, including a new song by Sam inspired by Carmody Grey’s talk at Kairos two nights before.

Tuesday October 4th
INTRODUCTION TO KAIROS

With short talks and complimentary drinks and vegetarian food.
* Carmody Grey philosopher from Durham University spoke about how we can start asking questions again about what it
means to be human and to live a good life.
* Paul Powlesland, barrister, Lawyers for Nature spoke about why we need a new relationship between the law, nature and
the earth and why this needs to be an ecosystem of legal interventions. Paul explained Rights of Nature and why they
are a crucial part of any such eco-system.

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