I want to start by declaring my position. I love ideas. I am curious about almost everything. My regret is I can’t live to be hundreds of years old and therefore be able to indulge my curiosity becoming expert in multiple areas. I am not unique in this enchantment with the world rather it is a shared human condition. Where I am lucky is being in a position to indulge and develop it day after day.
Being in an art and craft school places you in an environment where ideas and the potential of what to do with them are investigated seriously. You take part in a process that anthropological evidence indicates humans have developed since earliest times, a discovery about and questioning of our place in the world mediated through objects and rituals. The artist Christian Boltanski said, ‘Art is always a witness, art is to do with our relation to the time in which we live. So if we want to understand society we should look at society’s artists.’
So I need to gain a depth of knowledge about what I am interested in. Then I need to be able to link my ideas in unexpected ways and find a way to capture these in an object or experience. On top of this the work must be able to engage and resonate with those that encounter it.
This is not easy. It takes much practice and refining of ideas and both technical and critical skills. Often what is made falls short and to be in an environment where the work is supported and encouraged is crucial to recognising and continuing to develop the skills needed. Thank goodness for the creative brains third point of difference, the brains release of the reward chemical that makes success feel so euphoric.