Time is flying by in a blur. I know this, because I have begun measuring time in blogs. Not “a few weeks ago,” but rather “a few blogs ago.” Yes, well a few blogs ago I brought up the issue of
creationism creativity and science, intent on making the point that contrary to some popular misconceptions, many scientists are creative.
I met with a little bit of resistance from some of our own bloggers, perhaps due to my poor choice of examples of such creativity. For example, I used blogging itself as a mode of creativity, with the members of our little collective putting forth unique samples of their writing. I also took a frustrating example of my own: in having to devise creative methods to overcome the disastrous e-mail system that will soon be only a bad memory by next week. My ingenious solution to these e-mail issues, it was argued by some some of the readers, was more on the line of a problem-solving task–perhaps not akin to true creativity. Point taken.
But now I want to relate to an example of real creativity–creating something from nothing. Or worse than nothing–from the ashes of unfunded grants or unaccepted manuscripts. True creativity. Allow me to explain…
Let me begin with a photo:
Dr. Naava Naslavsky, recipient of the 2012 Best Artist award at the annual Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) “Art & Soup” fundraiser
Naava has always loved sculpture, but has been increasingly refining her paper mache skills over the past few years. The VNA fundraiser invites only a few dozen jury-selected artists to participate each year, and I believe that this is Naava’s 3rd year in a row. Many of the artists indeed do art on a full-time basis, so for a researcher slogging away at experiments, papers and grants to find the time to put together an exhibition to compete with such focused artists is no trivial matter. It’s not merely creativity, but a burning desire or dedication to churn out art.
Naava’s newest pieces are often exhibited at Omaha’s Blue Pomegranate art gallery (see the paper mache section).
So the 2012 Art & Soup began well last Sunday morning, and we were able to set up Naava’s pieces nicely, very glad to have the extra table that she had requested in advance. Until—a person who never actually introduced herself but assumed a posture of authority (and it later turned out was another artist) came by demanding that we down-scale our display to a single table.
Being a pleasant sort, Naava regretfully began to agree, seeing that the authority figure was bent on having her way, claiming inequality to other artists. But that’s why I was there. No, no no. You don’t survive the military and 10 years in an academic position by bending over to receive a kick in the butt. The table stayed.
And justice for all. The double-table display just before starting.
Let the fundraiser begin!
The ballerina. Recently.
The beetles. Only 1 of the pair was sold!
The needle nurse went within minutes. What do you expect at a Visiting Nurse Association fundraiser?
Shopping therapy was also a hit.
And finally, the one I’ll never let her sell. It’s MINE!
The science enthusiast. First featured in my second-ever blog, “The Age of Reason” in 2010.
All in all, the Art & Soup was a great success, with 50% of the proceeds going directly to the VNA. I also didn’t realize one could fill up on so many different kinds of soup!
So who still says scientists aren’t creative?