Sunday, October 28, 2018

John Cleese: Lecture on Creativity

Many years ago, the English actor John Cleese, co-founder of the Monty Python comedy troupe, gave a terrific lecture on creativity.  He offered some wonderful reflections about the creative process.  Here's an excerpt: 

There is one negative thing that I can say and it's negative because it's easier to say what creativity isn't...  a bit like the sculptor who when asked how he sculpted a very fine elephant explained that he'd taken a big block of marble and then knocked away all the bits that didn't look like an elephant.  The negative thing is that creativity is not a talent.  It is not a talent.  It is a way of operating... When I say a way of operating, what I mean is that creativity is not an ability that you either have or do not have.   It is, for example, and this may surprise you, absolutely unrelated to IQ provided you're intelligent above a certain minimal level.  

Here's the video of the complete lecture: 

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