I read two books over the weekend about creativity and the art world. They are absolute opposite books in terms of style but both had the same message for an artist. Creativity is assumed. Being an artist takes work. Don’t quit your day job.
Ignore Everybody – and 39 other keys to creativity is a quick read. That being said, it is also the kind of book you keep on your bookshelf and go back to now and then. Derick picked this up in the business section at the bookstore, I picked it up and couldn’t put it down. It is written for anyone who requires some level of creativity in their job. I know that it is mostly “sound bites” but so many of them rang true for me and were reassuring or ass-kicking. I’ve not heard of Hugh MacLeod or his blog, www.gapingvoid.com but I’m now on his mailing list.
Seven Day in the Art World is written by an art historian/sociologist (and Canadian), Sarah Thornton. Another book I could not put down. It covers all aspects of the art world, from school to studio to art writing to auctions. I do think you have to be really really interested in fine art to enjoy it. To quote the Back of the book, Named one of the best art books of 2008 by The New York Times and The Sunday Times [London] “An indelible portrait of a peculiar society.” I found this on the paperback picks table at the library.
One more book, also from the library, that I read last week, is dictation: a quartet by Cynthia Ozick. I’ve not heard of this author before but I’m pretty excited to have discovered her and look forward to reading more. This is an eclectic mix of short stories and I enjoyed everyone of them.