From: John Hudson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu May 08 2003 - 15:42:29 EDT
At 11:11 AM 5/8/2003, Peter_Constable@sil.org wrote:
>I think John inappropriately confused creativity and talent, or creativity
>and innovation (I'll explain below what I mean).
I should state my own position regarding creativity clearly: the assertion
that someone is 'expressing his creativity' and that this is somehow a good
thing in and of itself to be applauded as if we were all kindergarten kids,
means nothing to me. Someone expresses his creativity? So what? Such claims
remind me of the Dry Shave comic in which the performance artist stands on
the street corner vomiting on the shoes of passersby: 'Oh, wait, I'm going
to express myself again!'
My father was an artist, art educator and internationally recognised expert
on children's art; some of the major British and American artists of the
later 20th century stayed at our homes in Wales and Canada when I was a
child. My father always insisted that *everyone* had creative potential,
could be creative and should be encouraged to develop their creativity. But
the very universality of creativity makes it a valueless currency in and of
itself. The measure of creativity is not the expression of it but the
*products* of it. In this respect, creativity is a universal preserequisite
to talent, application and improvement, but it does not guarantee any of
these and by itself counts for naught. The child psychologists who maintain
that a child throwing faeces against the wall are expressing creativity are
probably correct in this. But so what? The child's expression of creativity
doesn't make faeces on the wall culturally significant, worthwhile,
something to be celebrated.
Tiro Typeworks www.tiro.com
Vancouver, BC email@example.com
As for the technique of trimming the nib,
Do not be greedy!
I will not reveal its nuances; I withhold its secrets.
- Ibn al-Bawwab, Ra'iyyah
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