Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Creativity Crisis



Genius can appear as instant. The 90 percent perspiration formula, as we understand it, in such instance, disappears. Looks easy, as the little girl climbs through the looking glass; the corner of the canvas lifts; and the derivations from centuries of impressions upon the Akashic records of time are streamed in a recognizable flow of consciousness. Otherwise, Fosbury might have flopped; Seurat may have pixilated beyond recognition. And a Sunday in the Park might lead into a succession of ordinary days of unproductive restfulness. We are humans, doing, as well as humans, being, and genius, that brilliant capture of the ephemeral made concrete in the mind, or made inordinately productive, is almost invariably particularized by others' recognition of usefulness, impact, effect. Lightbulb moments are too easily turned off by trip-switches. What profit it mankind if a manuscript of brilliant insight be tossed to sea in a bottle that is swallowed by a whale, never to be seen again? What profit the intentions of the writer of such a work other than that she or he has done something with the minute particle of Everything that is his or her own uniqueness? Do the canvases in the mind do any good until they find their way through the hand? Is an audience necessary? And even then, there be but few moreover moved indelibly.

Already, like notes tossed to sea, I mayve lost you. Fosbury and Seurat are esoteric references, admittedly. The simplicity of the anonymous cartoon depicted above becomes for the viewer yet more of genius dependent on one's knowledge of art, the reason why that particular painting was chosen, the consciousness of the derivations of plucking up sufficient courage to peek past the obvious, and to render insight into other dimensions. Plato's cave, Alice in Wonderland, Winnie the Pooh, and M'Lord William Turner all have something in common. But shall we give to Plato the pre-eminence of looking over his shoulder for truth?  Even Aristotle found fault. Genius is not dependent on accuracy. It is in essence about insight. And then we may give the idea to the engineers and mechanics and glass blowers to create the mass-production to enlighten us all. Or perhaps the publisher and the journalist and the television will bruit our product's efficacy, even if not attached to our name. Not all genius is publicized, seen, appreciated, or understood.

Theatre Shows I have directed, performed in, designed, have had thanks to others momentary qualities of ephemeral beauty that needed being there fully to appreciate. No video has given the product credit. No photo. Yet even among all those present, we each see, feel, apprehend, comprehend, and process differently. Very seldom, by the light of the fire, do we conspire. We sing carols; we hear the same words; we listen simultaneously. Yet I know some who actually do not like Bob Dylan. For me, as singer and guitar player, I take great pride in never delivering the product the same way as before. Firstly, because I'm incapable of it (my musicianship is insufficiently developed), and secondly, because each time I sing a song it is "the first time", and emotion evolves as I find the words give meanings to my rendition; or is it the other way round?

I am stalling. My newest painting has/is undergoing several metamorphoses. But I am not finding flow. That which is in my brain is instant, like seeing a heron poised to strike from its solitary perch on a rock in an indistinct seascape that is as fragmented as a multifold of molecules intersecting in time and space so as to be barely recognizable in the singular focus that one maintains on the stilled shape of that mesmerizing bird. Not quite like in a fog. So too for anything else we give focus. This next word, 'now', is all your eyes see/saw in the blur of everything surrounding it. How to paint that, and yet to give everything else sufficient content that the viewer may appreciate its significance to the whole? And therein resides my meaning: the significance of everything to the entirety of the whole. Genius lies in those who do make it all look effortless, complete, and worthwhile. Yet perhaps the atavistic genius in each of us lies instinctual in every molecule, as but part of the grand complexity? Integrated. After all, which part of All and Everything is not also a part? Come, by my fire, lets conspire; breath for breath.


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