3 September 2011

On Community and Creativity

Christiana Söderberg interviewed by Charlotte Rey for Acne Paper

Charlotte: But how do we as individuals relate to something of this scale [global environmental problems]? Since these are changes we barely experience in a lifetime.

Christiana: We have grown up in a culture where we are not taught how to take responsibility for our circumstances, we have not been encouraged to create our own realities or become aware of the power we dispose over as individuals — we fear our individual actions are insignificant. This is where the idea of a local community comes in — a neutral forum outside of the home and work place, which would meet us halfway, since it allows us to hold on to our structures of society, family and social networks, but introduces new perspectives through dialogue ... Our system and the expectations that come with it — education, family, career — is a very tough box to climb out of to find whatever truth you are looking for. Here, a community provides a bridge. A local community can provide people with neutral spaces to have conversations and introduce new perspectives.

Dr David Napier interviewed by Ariella Wolens for Acne Paper

Ariella: How can youths be encouraged in their creative thinking?

David: Give people more free time. They need some time in nice places, to be in environments that are good for them. They need to understand that experiencing what we call repetitive noxious stimulants — like phones beeping — is potentially desensitising and not good for us ... The point is that people need to be liberated productively, that is to say, they need good examples. And we need to understand that many failures can be the basis for a single creative idea. We need to learn how to respect the failed attempts of others, which is something we're very bad at ... Unless we are able to acknowledge and respect the dangers and the high costs to society of supporting creative thinking, we will do very little to enhance creativity.