Painting Michael Eldridge 'Adriatic' series
Leonard Cohen was asked in an interview in the seventies where creativity comes from, and he replied 'If I knew, I'd go there more often' A good question and an even better answer. But I wonder if it really matters what we call this seemingly inexhaustible source; some refer to the Universe or the Cosmic Creative Pool but you could just as easily call it The Cosmic Fridge (I do suppose) for all it matters. We just know that it's there, somewhere between us and outside of us, some space that is continually energised and which usually arrives when it chooses; ready or not. I like to think though, that it also leaves a glimmer of itself inside us, if we were but to know it, some sort of residual memory of its splendour, in passing. Like a glowing ember waiting for us to breath and blow it back to flame and keep it alive should it fade.That it is, if you will, a symbiotic relationship, that we cannot live without each other. Our lives without creativity, whatever form this might take, would become shallow and arid. And creativity without us?
When the first earthquake struck us a few weeks back (here in Italy) there was a roaring which travelled at the speed of a Eurostar beneath our house, and I often think that Creativity is just like this, that it comes roaring past us, maybe always, maybe just when it feels like it, I don't know. But the sure thing is that we have to keep ourselves in a receptive state to be able to catch it like a leaf in a gale and hold it close and accept it as a gift.
You might not be surprised to know that our workshops in Italy are about this fascinating phenomenon; this merger between something which resides within us and something outside of us
which we could call another realm.
Sure, we paint, we take photographs, make music, poetry; but what we produce is incidental.
Who says my poems are poems?
My poems are not poems
After you know my poems are not poems
Then we can begin to discuss poetry
Zen Poet Ryokan
That sort of thing.......
So this seeming act of indifference to our work, in fact gives it tremendous freedom and this is when
quite marvellous things begin to happen. It is this that I call creating beyond ourselves; entering this
realm of timelessness, where what we might refer to as our normal selves simply dissolve and
something greater appears.
This is the arena we play in at Starstone.
And we choose places in Italy of great power and beauty, Venice and Assisi, which fuel our adventures with colour and energy, away from la vita abituata, the daily grind.
Workshops in Italy...