Goethe's Science of Living Form

The Artistic Stages

Nigel Hoffman; Foreword by Craig Holdrege

Out of print

Quick Look

Uses the four classical elements of earth, water, air and fire to present a new scientific perspective on nature.

254 x 177 mm
Adonis Press
Philosophy of the Natural World
52 b/w and 8 colour illustrations
176 pages
Publication date:
02 Aug 2007


This is a beautifully illustrated book which presents a new perspective on nature. Hoffman takes the four classical elements of Earth ,Water, Air and Fire, and shows how each corresponds to a unique approach to understanding the natural world. His four stages of scientific enquiry combine scholarly acuity with artistic insight, and make use of analytical science, mechanics, sculpture, music and poetry.

Table of Contents

Art and the Emergence of an Authentic Organic Science
Goethe and the Phenomenological Method
Toward an Authentic Method in the Life Sciences
A Goethean Methodology through the Elemental Modes

Earth Cognition - Physical Thinking - the Mechanical
Water Cognition - Imagination - the Sculptural
Air Cognition - Inspiration - the Musical
Fire Cognition - Intuition - the Poetical

Evolution as Creative Process
The Landscape and its Organs
The Human Being and the Evolution of Landscape
The Yabby Ponds: A Goethean Study of Place


'The reader will find much to intrigue and may agree that the Goethean approach to landscape if adequately appreciated (my emphasis) amounts to a 'revolution in ecological understanding'.'
-- Martin Lockley, The Scientific and Medical Network Review


Nigel Hoffmann was born in Sydney, Australia. He founded the magazine Transforming Art which he edited for ten years; one of the main themes explored in this publication was the relationship of art to science. He has taught a number of short courses in Goethean science, and in recent years has taught at Waldorf Schools in Melbourne and in Basel, Switzerland. where he currently resides.

Just feel like browsing?

Browse our catalogues

Interested in an author?

Discover authors