The context in which we live and work nowadays in complex. Using a well know acronym, we entered in the so-called V.U.C.A era (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous). Based on my personal and professional experience and most updated social research, I start to believe that the logical and efficiency-based approach that we have continued to apply in the last 100 years or more, is not the best way to succeed if not integrated with a creative one. The current context needs more adaptability, creativity, ability to make sense of things, a better integration of mind, hearth and hands, a higher connection with our emotion, values, spirits and purpose. These concepts start to enter even in the corporate context where previously they were almost banned. Organizations do not use anymore the “Machine” metaphor to represent themselves and start using the “Living Organism” metaphor which embrace many of these new concepts. It is common nowadays hearing that “right” brain type of people is becoming more and more essential in our type of world, where many “left” brain activities will be taken over by machines.
So, if that is true, how to integrate the new “creative” mindset in our life and work? How to shift paradigm? This is where art can really help because art is based on creativity, emotion expression, meaning making, passion, artistic skills such as envisioning, empathy, observation and many other, exactly the type of culture we need to develop in our society and organizations.
Being an individual who has been exposed to both Efficiency paradigm (as Corporate Executive/Transformation Expert in the business context) and Creativity paradigm (as an artist), I started to reflect on how art practice and art appreciation could help for self-development and transformation and started to journal about my personal artistic journey from a self-development angle. Beside publishing articles on this topic, Marco Polo Consulting has started also to propose and facilitate:
Artistic creativity is a U journey
As a facilitator of transformation I refer often to U Theory from Otto Sharmer and the more I explore the topic of Art4Transformation I realize how much art practice is enabling me to sense and experience all the steps of the U journey.
1. Holding the space: every painting starts with an intention or an openness to listen what how the painting "wants" to be paint
2. Observing: beside the act of painting, most of my time is spent to observe, to do research that will give me insights for creating
3. Sensing: art is not only in the mind, art is about feelings and only by connecting with them you can create
4. Presencing: when I enter in the state of flow I am in tune with my Self, My identity, I let go my assumptions, I open to new possibilities. Not easy but when it happens it is magic.
5. Crystallizing: The sparkling of an idea, the "aha" moment of creativity is not enough, when you create a new piece of art you need to articulate this idea and intention, make it become concrete. Only by acting you will know if it is right or wrong and you understand how to improve it.
6. Prototyping: how many paintings I made that I considered wrong or mistaken? so many! but only through them I got the ones that are good.
Be present and authentic
The importance of unlearning
Practice, practice, practice
Have a good mentor
Learning from mistakes
Accepting unpredictable outcomes
Art as a dialogue
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