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Feb 2015

The Makers Series | Imagine

When we think of art, artists, and creativity, we almost always consider the imagination to be a key component of what artists do, and who they are. It’s not uncommon to hear that a fertile and vivid imagination is what sets “creatives” apart from the rest of us, even more than skills honed by years of practice at a craft; and the ability to come up with something new is especially prized in our culture of digital, virtual consumption. Where once imagination was also seen as something that could “run away” from reality, and was critiqued for confusing the real and he merely “pretend,” today creativity and imagination are strongly and positively associated with novelty and invention—of making and thinking things that never were before, and might not ever actually exist at all.

But is the imagination only — for better or worse — aimed at flights of fancy or novelty, or might we de-couple creativity and innovation? Is the imagination only a tool to make what has never been made before, or might the imagination be the key to understand what actually exists now, and what happened in the past, as well as what is in store for the future? Can the imagination help us see connections that are hidden in plain sight? Can the imagination guide us towards what is really real?

Join us for the next Makers Series evening on Friday, February 27th at 7:00 p.m. at Third Church (600 Forest Avenue) as we explores these questions through the lives and work of three makers for whom imagination provides the bridge between the “already” and the “not yet”: trumpeter Taylor Barnett composes and plays music that reveals connections between multiple genres and cultural traditions; medical illustrator Paul Gross uses multi-media artistry to help doctors, patients and their advocates see the human body in ways that imaging technology alone can not; and philosopher and cultural critic Jamie Smith proposes that what we imagine for the future shapes our concrete present. RSVP at the Facebook event here.

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