Creative practice keeps us connected to the spontaneous and playful side of life, encouraging the imagination for such things as visualisation, free artistry, personal expression, reflection on our story and unfolding with other….
A Contemporary Fine Art degree took me directly to the creative core, where I embodied the artist as an experiment of radical subjectivity in a series of live actions. I engaged directly with people in the town centre by introductions, handshakes, antics with long cotton thread and documented them looking at me through the lens, exploring our shared notions of spontaneous vulnerability and social power.
I also had the opportunity to experiment with intersubjectivity and Bohm Dialogue. I first had to spend a year painting in oils on one large square canvas. As a youngster I was mesmerised by the more pictorial lettering. I took short courses in design, calligraphy, gilding and heraldry and started a small business teaching and producing art. Whether using squirrel-hair brushes, gold-leaf on calf-skin vellum or black calligraphy ink on handmade paper, the traditions of sophisticated mark-making and graphical artistry holds a deep magic and presence. I have creative spells that last a few weeks or months, churning out words, ink and paint, seeking new compositions, manifestations, shapes, letterforms, symbols of undiscovered meaning.
With Dialogue I witnessed a form of collective group consciousness. Dialogue is a highly creative form of human intersubjectivity; communication, with thought, senses and the word as tools, tapping directly into the qualities and mechanics of live interaction and relational sense-making. During one session at uni, with about eight students and lecturers, I had the experience of witnessing a large bubble of intuitive energy hovering over our circle, enveloping us all at the same time, accompanied by a feeling of congruence and love. This was a turning point where I incorporated Dialogue into creative self-discovery workshops for refugees and home-schooled children, working with the concept of gallery as live learning space, funded by the European government. Many times I have experienced a group come and flow together in what’s also known as koinonia, sohbet or ‘ impersonal fellowship‘ (Bohm).
Some years later I encountered the participatory sense-making and Enactive philosophy of Dr. Hanne De Jaegher and Francisco Varela, which provided an explanation and theoretical framework for some of my more non-dual experiences. Along with the rest of our team, we set talking about bringing The Enactive Approach into dialogue, autism, therapy and coaching.
After a further bursts of colour, I settled into black paint and inks in a return to the foundations of writing and communication. Intrigued by a diagnosis of Asperger’s, I began working with Dialogue in the autism community and formed Dialogica… plugged, plunged, lunged…