Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Are people afraid of creativity?

What place does creativity have in education?

"Almost every education related TED video available states or implies that creative thinking is at the center of the learning process and at the root of every breakthrough. 
What place do we give creative thinking, free exploration, uncharted discovery in our current educational models?
Are the prevalent public education systems becoming a means to program the masses rather than a way to facilitate discovery, growth and self realization? Are students truly turned into useful citizens, or rather adults trained to respond to induced stimulus in predetermined ways, much like rats in the lab?
Are we afraid of where original thinking can bring us? Are we afraid of change? Are we afraid of losing control? How far are we ready to go to keep it? And do we really think creativity can be killed?" 

What are we worth? Artists and the Economic Crisis Seminar

Zineb Sedira, Shipwrecks: the Death of a Journey V, 2008
© Zineb Sedira 2011
Last week I attended 'What are we worth?' a seminar that is part of The New Economy of Art – a series of open discussions, ran by DACS, throughout 2011-12. Its focus was on the economic developments and opportunities in the cultural sector that impact on artists, from the perspective of artists. The seminar shared knowledge to provoke action to enable artists to influence the future ecologies and economies in which they operate."

The event hosted three speakers, John Kieffer, Zineb Sedira and Bob and Roberta Smith . Despite the general depressive content of the seminar in regards to the decline of art in education, and the prospect of survinging as an artist in our current climate being majorly under threat, it was motivational as inspiring.
I left with a deeper understanding of these turbulent times which has fueled my drive and passion to push on and to succeed. For me the most resonating point was that we need to come together. We need to move away from the isolated autonomous self, which has been a movement in art that well surpasses this comment, but one that still obviously needs to be repeated. 

John Kieffer particularly advocated the advice of "strength in numbers", to collaboratively pull together, not just for comparing ideas or advising each other but to find new models for working. This is an opportunity to start something new, perhaps the growth of a new sub culture. It is infact an exciting time, artists have never stopped making art, nor will they. I feel we are on the brink of something new, a movement into the unknown, but one we must do together, supporting each other through solidarity in these difficult and challenging times.

The next talk is in March 2011 . To listen to the discussion follow this link for the PDF downloads

'Offret', Headlines of the Future.

“Offret” is a process-based, community-focused project that will be part of the Exchange Radical Moments! Live Art Festival, which will take place simultaneously in several European cities on the 11th of November 2011.

In collaboration with the art collective 6th Hour Productions, and journalist Glenn Mcmahon, I co-facilitated a series workshops to provide the content for a community newspaper. The idea was to employ creative thinking to facilitate a reflection on what the community is now, and what it aspires to be. 

The material from our discursive sessions informed stories that the participants wrote into articles, to produce a newspaper that represents their voice, the Headlines of the Future.

Copies will be distributed in Clapham/Battersea on the 11/11/11/, in correlation with a live video projection, onto a building that was badly affected by arson during the riots. Thus forming the final stage of 'Offret', the intervention.