Creative freedom not genius.

I nipped into Damian Hirst‘s new Newport Street gallery last week.

John Hoyland is on, and I was pleasantly inspired by his free exhibition.

Afterwards whilst flicking through the great books on sale there, one in particular made me think again of the importance of free culture in society:


In it, Mr. Hirst writes about how artists have always thrived by being free to do their thing. And it is this freedom that lets them create their unique work, not some kind of genius.

With the few that are lucky enough to earn a crust from it, in most cases, avoiding fame so that they can continue to create.

I have always loved the notion of creative freedom.

It is imperative our kids play before society and education condition them.

And have always tried to think like a kid, as I work.

Trying to get into that wonderfully playful state of naivety to crack a brief.

Then when running departments, I have always encouraged my teams to do the same.

It is only by being truly free, that we can we create out best work.

Not hindered by fear.

On digesting all the terrible news on the recent events in Paris, it struck me how important it still is, to create and defend places where we can do our best work.

So that people can enjoy and share together.

The arts are essential to counter negativity and acts of aggression.

By filling our lives with inspiring culture, we go on to be inspired and cultural.

This peace logo with the Eiffel tower in was inspired


And makes the point better than this post.

Again, how telling is it that the artist, Jean Jullien, doesn’t want the fame. (He was just doing what he felt would help.)

Here’s to never-ending creativity and culture.

The world needs it now, more than ever.

Thank you Mr. Hirst, Mr. Hoyland and Monsieur Jullien.

Long may you shine.

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