Launched in November 2013, The Learned Pig is an online magazine with four main areas of interest: art, thinking, nature, writing. The fruit of a growing global community, The Learned Pig is driven to foster productive tension by exploring different ways of thinking, writing, seeing and doing – and by bringing these all together in one place.
At its heart, The Learned Pig is an online magazine about art. We champion art and we champion writing about art. From the prehistoric to the hyper-conceptual, we are interested in understanding art as a way of acting in the world. In particular, our penchant is for contemporary art that pushes beyond the white walls of the commercial gallery to involve interdisciplinary collaboration, scientific research, or environmental ethics.
The Learned Pig is interested in new insights and ancient wisdoms. From works of personal revelation to quasi-academic writing on philosophy, ethics and systems of thought, we publish thinking in the fields of cultural geography, anthropology, medicine, the occult, history, and deconstruction, among many, many others. In particular, we are interested in rethinking humanity’s place in the world, and we remain fascinated by those odd moments when rational thinking stops, and something else begins to emerge.
From its conception, The Learned Pig has been unconvinced by the mechanist model of nature that has existed since Descartes. We believe in the importance of rethinking the relationship between humanity and the environment – whether that involves looking outside of modern Western philosophies or close readings of the latest biological research, or simply taking a walk among the blackly melting mushrooms of a dark, autumnal forest. However it might be manifested, our interest is in a non-essentialist definition of nature and in a relationship that is always more than merely oppositional.
The Learned Pig has published painting and drawing, films, sound art, and music scores. We run frequent photography essays and stories. But the majority of the magazine is devoted to writing. This includes not only creative writing – poetry, short stories, imaginative ramblings, extracts from novels – but also powerful essays, overlooked histories, literary criticism, and writings that magically weave all these things together in one. Writers we’re fond of include Svetlana Alexievich, William Blake, JA Baker, Donna Haraway, and Nikolai Gogol.
If any of these things spark your interest and you’d like to contribute to The Learned Pig then please do not hesitate to get in touch.