Tag: creativity

It’s difficult to read Andrew Pickering’s The Cybernetic Brain and not be swept up in his infectious enthusiasm for the British cyberneticians. They were the fun wing of an approach which “emerged from nowhere as far as established fields and career paths were concerned” with the “cyberneticians and their projects were outsiders to established fields […]

My notes on Yuill, S. (2005) Programming as Practice in J. Gibbons and K. Winwood, eds., Hothaus Papers: perspectives and paradigms in media arts, Birmingham: ARTicle Press. What does it mean to program? In this intriguing paper Simon Yuill takes issue with responses to this question which reduce programming to a technical practice, reduced to […]

There are some wonderful reflections in this Guardian interview with George RR Martin on the writing process, the power of fiction and losing yourself in your work: When he’s really on a roll with his writing, “there are days when I sit down in the morning with my cup of coffee, I fall through the page and […]

In a wonderful London Review of Books piece, the composer Nico Muhly reflects on the challenge of being ready to think. If our work is embedded in a particular environment, scaffolded by the equipment we have within an office, it can be difficult to think when on the move. But even if we can take […]

I love this description by Neil Gaiman of his experience of imposter syndrome early in his career, quoted in Presence by Amy Cuddy: I would have this recurring fantasy in which there would be a knock on the door, and I would go down, and there would be somebody wearing a suit not an expensive suit, just […]

I just came across this series of videos in which Aesop Rock explains the backstory to his album Skelethon. I’m struck by the thought that there’s no piece of creative work I care about that wouldn’t leave me interested to hear such a story about it. Particularly when it has this degree of granularity, offering […]

The RSA surveyed their fellows in higher education about challenges to creativity within the sector. Though I’d certainly like more information (n=???) the responses they received paint an increasingly familiar picture of how the accelerated academy corrodes the impulse towards creativity of those working within it: Structure: The biggest barriers seemed to be structural, with […]

For the last couple of days, I was in Edinburgh taking part in Time Without Time. It was a great event and I’ll probably blog more about it next week. The second day was very different from the usual academic events I go to. This picture probably conveys how this is so: The experience left […]

My initial impressions of Bernard Stiegler were far from positive, largely ensuing from the sheer incomprehensibility of his writing. However this essay by Mark Featherstone (HT Emma Head) has reminded me why I bought Stiegler’s books in the first place after a few people explained the themes he addresses in his work. Featherstone is concerned with Stiegler’s […]

From this Brainpickings article: Detachment and commitment. A willingness to divorce oneself from the obvious is surely a prerequisite for the fresh combinatorial act that produces effective surprise. there must be as a necessary, if not a sufficient, condition a detachment from the forms as they exist… But it is a detachment of commitment. For there […]

I really like Steve Fuller’s arguments about ‘improvisation’. He rehearsed them yesterday in a post for Sociological Imagination about the originality of conference keynotes: For about ten years now, I’ve been arguing about the benefits of improvisational performance in academia, not simply as an experience for the audience but more importantly as a way of getting ‘experts’ […]

How do you find time to write? I’ve become fascinated by this question in recent months. Implicit within it is an understanding of ‘writing’ which I’m coming to see as deeply problematic. It treats the creative activity of writing as a matter of temporal budgeting. But how much time does writing take? It obviously depends […]

Another example in a very specific area is given by a client in a follow-up interview as he explains the different quality that has come about in his creative work. It used to be that he tried to be orderly. “You begin at the beginning and you progress regularly through to the end.” Now he […]