Urgent Evoke

A crash course in changing the world.

Working Name: Wonderment (inc. - if this goes anywhere)

So I know one needs both logic and creativity.

The way I see it there is enough logic and knowledge floating around the workspaces of today.

So I want to focus on a way of increasing creativity in adults much to the creativity levels children posess. However; one difference should ultimately exist between the creativity that the adults will posess in relation to a children's creativity: the naive quality.

But in order for the adults to unleash their hidden, creative sides they must push past the boundaries they have established within their minds to become more

- daring

- curious

- inventive

- original

in their thinking.

Ultimately I wish to change the wh*** way adults think. Their thought patterns would not lead them to absurdity of course, or their ideas would be straight-out rejected within society. However, I believe that in order for someone to make a change, they have to do something no one else has done, right? Well nothing much will change if millions of people every day follow the same path, too scared or worried to leave the established road and make their own.

I know I talk about roads a lot. Sorry ^^

- "Play is vital to learning and creativity for children and adults." - PJE

- "Playing frees you up to think and... oh yes it is fun too!" - PJE

- "It's really important to keep exploring and learning and being creative. Play a game, run around, be silly, imagine." - Sarah Hickox

From my other post I have picked out your ideas that appeal to me the most.

- A multiplayer creative space with goal oriented solutions could make people cooperate to achieve a goal through artistic means. - Shane M. Wheeler

- Do something with schools to encourage creativity, it could change the entire education system. - Nicolas Dkystra

- Childrens library for all ages - Katherine Morrison

Don't worry, Katherine, I promise I won't steal your idea. However, it reminded me of an idea I had a while ago that must have been lost and forgotten in some part of my brain. Basically, my idea would be more than a room, or an art installation. It would be on a grand scale - the bigger the better.

My idea would be a wh*** venue aimed at increasing adult creativity - although children would be welcome too of course. ^^

What would be in this venue, though?

Well I was playing around with a few ideas. When Nicolas mentioned that 'children have creativity, and somewhere along the course of life we loose it'; it got me thinking. What would happen if we reminded adults of their childhood? Would part of their brain come out of the shadows, remind them how much of a creative person they were?

The venue could be set up in three parts:

Part 1: Activities, installations and performances aimed at helping adults remember childhood.

Part 2: Activities, installations and performances encouraging creativity.

Part 3: Activities of installations incorporating the use of both creativity and logic.

So yeah, this is where my thoughts are taking me.

So tell me about your childhood, any significant memories, smells, tastes, ANYTHING. I want to hear it.

Also, any ideas about reminding yourself or someone else about your childhood would be great.

As you may have noticed, I would like to focus on part 1.

-Amber

Views: 88

Comment by Shakwei Mbindyo on March 29, 2010 at 8:48am
+1 Courage. This is a great initiative an will take courage to get adult learners to unlearn and move out of thier comfort zones. I see this applying very much to most of the school systems in developing countries (certainly in Kenya) where creativity is (perhaps unintentianally) discouraged and uniformity of thought is encouraged.
Comment by Shakwei Mbindyo on March 29, 2010 at 8:48am
Wonderment - I like it :)
Comment by PJE on March 29, 2010 at 9:16am
Amber Sophia,
I think the idea about reminding adults of their childhood as a way to stimilate earlier creativity is super.
It reminds me of some psychology researcher who studied a group of very elderly men who were physically and mentally slowed down. She made a house for them to live which was as exactly what it would have been like when they were young men. The newspapers, the radio the television shows (can't remember if there was a television in those days) were from the time of their youth, likewise the food, lights fireplace. There was no one to look after them and so they had to do everything amongst themselves, cooking cleaning washing getting dressed. At the end of the week the men had regained some of their youth. They were physically more able and their mental agility had improved too.
I am trying to find you a reference but it is escaping me at the moment.

Also in many types of positive therapy a time of strength, happiness, freedom, or success is brought to mind in the client. For some people this time is difficult to find, sometimes they have to go all the way back to imagining a time like their first step, or their first word. This memory of success or strength can be built up and built upon to produce that same quality/feeling in the present. So making a positive time in the past vivid again does indeed have real effect on the present.
Best wishes
PJE
Comment by Gabriel Stephanus on March 29, 2010 at 9:17am
If you're not that shocked enough to notice, I am 16. So I'm not yet an adult, but I'm not a child anymore. I'm probably in an age which many people could call "teen age".

I read your quote, and I think I have a good feedback for this:
"When Nicolas mentioned that 'children have creativity, and somewhere along the course of life we loose it'; it got me thinking..."

However, children tend to be creative because (this is what I felt when I was one) they have too much time, a lot, lot, lot of time. Spacing out for such a long time, no child would be able to do that, (even in your dreams!) They will search for something that they could do, whatever it is to prevent "an absence of mind". And then they would do whatever they could have wanted. Yet, "whatever they could have wanted" is made out of nothing, and the process of making something out of nothing, uses Creativity.

When I saw adults in general, I think they have so little time (I'm starting to feel this, too) to spend their time searching for "whatever they could have wanted". They already have their responsibilities, their jobs, their tomorrows, their goals. If there's not even a chance for the "Creativity" to be used in any of those things above, I'm afraid that's what made adults lose their creativity, they've stopped using it.
Comment by Eileen Hurley on March 29, 2010 at 10:05am
I think you make some really good points, Amber. I also think part of what happens to us isn't just that we forget how to be creative; we also are taught not to take risks. Not all work environments reward creativity, so we soon learn to go along with the group. Makes for quicker and easier meetings! A safe place to share our ideas is essential.

What came to mind for me with your post is the idea of play. As we grow up, I think many of us forget how to play also. Having kids of my own has kept me connected to play, but it doesn't come as naturally any more. Something as simple as LEGO can bring out a lot of play and creativity in most adults, though.
Comment by Rachel on March 29, 2010 at 12:02pm
Excellent idea, "adult re-education" coming in to play. I think adults need to feel like they are good at things - creative things ie) Cooking, Dancing, Painting, Drawing,Writing,Taking photo's, Researching, Public Speaking etc. in order to feel confident in taking those things and using them to innovate creative solutions. Most adults seem to hit a bumpy patch and then give up completely because their all encompassing belief in themselves has died off.

I think adults need the confidence that school's are in theory, supposed to give them. The confidence to think outside the box, to be creative and to have a place to go where it's okay to explore themselves creatively. Some adults get to that point in their lives where they crave a second chance in exploring the things they never did or got to do, so they go take a night class or go back to school. However, it would be nice if there were some sort of establishment that was founded on developing all of those creative skills that was not so:

a) expensive
b) had difficult hours to work around and,
c) had such creative-killer restrictions, that it kills the purpose

An adult outreach program for all walks of life based in the heart of a community would likely reap benefits if done right. I think it would have to be marketed very specifically so that adults did not feel silly or awkward going there.

I'm interested in seeing where this all goes.
Comment by Turil Cronburg on March 29, 2010 at 12:14pm
I've been saying for a long time that it will be a good day when schools become community solution centers, where people go to solve all of their social problems, as well as their personal problems, with people of all ages, and all learning and teaching styles in all subjects organize cla****, workshops, drop in areas, free fix-it shops, and salons, all free and open to everyone who wants to be there, with the local government supporting the center with resources. Your idea would totally fit into this kind of free school~organization as a more permanant library sort of thing. Sounds wonderful!
Comment by Nicolas Dykstra on March 29, 2010 at 3:31pm
Thanks for mentioning me...

I remember riding my bike as a child. I felt the wind in my face. I imagined myself in a race, and I would always ride as fast as I could. I took my bike off of ramps that I built, and remember the feeling of weightlessness.

I remember playing imaginary games. I imagined I was animals, and I read about those animals all the time. I jumped like rabbits, ran like a cheetah, and hit my chest like a big ole gorilla :D

The thing about being a child, is that you have imagination...

Imagination creates a fantasy in your mind. Those who continued to imagine, are the ones who experienced true success. Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King, Mozart. These people imagined something new, I hope this works out for you.
Comment by Lori Hutcherson on March 29, 2010 at 5:36pm
I love this post. Brainstorming time...for you and others! I have always said that one of my most valued attributes is my sense of awe and wonder. I don't think I have lost that! And I think it is directly correlated to my long time love of games. When I walk outside, I notice things other adults around me completely miss...the way the sunbeams play through the leaves of trees, the smell of the breeze...those things always make me stop and feel a sense of wonder. It's the same when I participate in any activity...there is always this sense of "something new might happen here!"

I think you have a key point in what you said about playing. As adults, we're often so wrapped up in the pressures and responsibilities of the world that we don't really let go or play. We're almost afraid to let our minds feel that freedom and elation.

I think you have a vision for teaching adults to embrace that childlike sense of awe and wonder again! I am excited to see what grows from that! :)
Comment by Katherine Morrison on March 29, 2010 at 6:32pm
Okay so I've been thinking a lot about your idea as I absolutely love it. I think it would be lovely if my library idea and yours could be come a reality and collaborate, your venue being the initial creation of adult wonderment, my library being the continuation, a place for further studies in wonderment.

Anyways, I think your venue should have three stages. The first would be a stage of sort cartesian deconstruction, where participants are encouraged to abandon the preconceived notions and social norms of adulthood, and assured that the space they are about to enter is free of judgement. I think a lot of adults don't actually lose their sense of play, they are just forced to hide it because they think they will be looked down upon by the rest of society. I don't know why but I imagine the first stage as something akin to the boat ride in Willy Wonka, only fewer bug pictures and less terrifying (hopefully).

Stage 2 I imagine to be just like Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium (I think in movies have you noticed?) I remember when I was little visiting the Castle Museum in York, where my Mum is from. Now, I am very lucky to come from a family that has never lost its sense of wonder or play. While at the museum with my Mum and Aunt's and my Grandma we walked through the section that has all sorts of old toys. All the adults faces lit up, and they started skipping around museum yelling "oh Mum look at this one! remember this one" as if my Mum and her sisters were kids again, and even my Grandma took a turn at being silly and goofy as she played dress up with some of the old costumes they had. This makes me think that toys are key. Have a room full of toys from all eras, both popular and obscure, and I think adults will become very nostalgic and then if you encourage them to play, just as they used to it would be a great way to make them remember what being a child was like.

The third stage would be taking their new attitude they learned in the Wonder Emporium stage and transferring it to the boardroom/lab. I'm imagining a room that is sort of a Wonder Emporium for adults. Whiteboards for ideas, high tech computers and gadgets for research and solutions, all the while keeping that sense of play. Google the pixar offices and I think you'll get an idea of what I'm thinking of. Then ask them to "play" with the toys in that room, get a brainstorming session going on some idea that applies to the adult world (perhaps a company could send its employees to you and determine certain problems that needed solved beforehand)

Anways, that's what I would envision an adult re-education installation would be. I think this three stage idea could also be translated into a virtual world too, a sort of mmorpg.

My favourite quote, which I think is very apt, is something I heard my Grandma say "When we grow up we lose all of our childish desires, including the desire to be a grown up." Wanting to be a grown up, that all encompassing desire to be bigger and older and more in charge of your own life is a very childish thing, so maybe we're not helping adults regain their childhood, you could actually be helping them to finally grow up.

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