Throughout the centuries creative people have shown astonishing versatility in their media of expression. Writers have had an urge to paint, painters to be composers, sculptors to be poets and so on. Leonardo da Vinci was remarkable as a visual artist but also as an engineer and poet. Michelangelo is renowned for his painting, sculpture and sonnets. In more recent times William Blake stands out as both painter and poet, and Victor Hugo as novelist and painter. In our own era people like D H Lawrence, Picasso, Strindberg, Klee, Dali and Andre Malraux have crossed disciplinary lines. What can we learn from this about the nature of creativity? Is there a lesson here in how we can all release our own creativity?
DR IAN GEORGE has been an art critic since the 1960. His postgraduate work was in aesthetics. Since then he has served on the Visual Arts Committee of the Festival of Perth, as a Trustee of the Queensland Art Gallery and Vice-President of the Queensland Festival, had two terms on the Community Arts Board of the Australia Council and is a regular lecturer at the National Gallery of Australia, the Art Gallery of SA and the National Gallery of Victoria. His most recent lecture at The Johnston Collection was How Much Colour is There in Your Life? in 2017.
image: Leonardo da Vinci (Italian, 1452-1519)
Recto: A seated old man, and studies and notes on the movement of water. Verso: Architectural studies, circa 1510Recto: Pen and ink. Verso: Red chalk | 154 x 217 mm (sheet of paper)The Royal Collection, England, RCIN 912579, Royal Collection Trust / ©Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018 | Public Domain