Saturday, 16 January 2010

Tiger Hunting.

Everybody's back in on Monday and so I've spent the day tidying up the lectures I'm going to be delivering. I've done a bit of work on revamping Level 1's Ways of Seeing course which we ran for the first time last year as an introduction to aesthetics and argument and I'm now developing the follow up Level 2 Creative Thinking course which hopefully will feed some of our discoveries back into the students own work.

It's hard to find a satisfying way to teach creativity. Is it about sensory engagement with the world, learning to see more? Or is it about re organising conventional ideas so that they take on a new look? Is it a diplomatic, pragmatic or inclusive concept, a way of problem solving? Or is it about finding an individual position or niche and holding out for the unique?

My instinct is that creativity carries risk and is feral, ungoverned by rules or tight definition. It's also probably relative - a pin striped suit might be the creative choice in a bohemian community. Above all it seems just to be a momentum, a strategy to avoid getting stuck in a rut. A restless tiger?

Whatever creativity is - it's clearly in demand as much now in education and business as in its traditional realms of science and the arts.

As the definition of creativity broadens its shape begins to shift away from the responsive and poetic towards something more vital, dynamic and necessary. The only places where creative thought is not welcome is where fixed orthodoxy has dominion and those places and people, dangerous as they are, seem to be increasingly isolated. Maybe there's hope in that.

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