Monday, 2 May 2011

Come Out To Play

There's something I like, which is called permaculture. At it's most sophisticated, the principles of permaculture can create entire communities living 'lightly' on the land, designing entire eco-systems that are self-sufficient.

But at my very humble level, permaculture is more about using those resources closest to you, in ways that they may not have originally been designed for. I found this on a website:

"The Problem is the Solution

Everything is potentially a positive resource just waiting for us as Permaculture designers to work out HOW to use it!

Trying to impose a predefined concept of “how things should be” in your system is very expensive of energy and resources. Working to optimize benefits and yields from what you have only requires a change in the way we see things."

That reminded me of one definition I recently heard of Play.

Frank Oppenheimer, in an article published in Exploratorium Magazine in 1980, said of exhibits for the Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco : "Exhibits are now usually made from scratch out of raw
stock through elaborate machining and welding, whereas in the early days we improvised by finding something that was made for some other purpose and using it to construct an exhibit. We even set out purposeless exhibits such as a vibrating timer and called it an Adjustable Plaything."

This, in turn, reminded me of the very early days of what is now the Apple Corporation, when Steve Jobs was fashioning computers with carapaces made out of wooden crates in his California garage.

The ability to look at something and see beyond what it was originally designed for, to see what else it might work towards, is - you'd like to think - a fundamental human cognitive ability. I mean, look at everything you can do with an old tyre - you can make a swing, some furniture, shoes or vegetable growing-containers .. the list goes on and on.

People who consider themselves to be artists are no strangers to this idea. For example, look at how Keira Rathbone makes art using typewriters - once an almost indespensible human tool, and now something considered obsolete by many. Then there is this guy - so close to my drummer's heart - Jascha Tobias, who made an entire drum-kit out of things that are certainly NOT percussion instruments:

I should get to the point. Play is not only something that children do, naturally and unreservedly. Play is something that arguably EVERYONE should do, whenever possible, in order to truly realise the full potential of resources - natural resources, internal resources and above all creative resources.

Bournemouth Creative Breaks can offer a comfortable and relaxed environment in which your creative self can, quite simply, come out to play. Book now and take advantage of our handsome early bird discount scheme.

1 comment:

  1. Tyres are so revolting and polluting when they burn - this is an infinitely preferable way to 'dispose' of them, and so effective! I love that little garden feature. And as for the drum kit: wow! Now *that* is some serious resourcefulness!!