Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Art and Science, can they solve the issues together?

I was watching TV3's The Nation after attending the dawn service in Christchurch the other week. It mentioned a enviornmental project called Dialogues with Tomorrow. I was interested so I did some digging.

Now Future is a partnership between Sophie Jerram and Dugal McKinnon. It's about projects lead by art that investigate core issues in sustainability and ecology. It also aims to create a greater partnership between humanity and the enviornment. One of these projects is Dialogues with Tomorrow. It brings together artists and scientists to develop and exchange ideas to help solve enviornmental problems.

In two days it will be the 51st anniversary of C.P. Snow's Two Cultures lecture. This served as inspiration for Now Future. C.P. Snow was concerned that Science and Art were become further apart and their cultures weren't working together anymore. This would have detrimental effects for both of them. Fortunately today these cultures are working more together than they use to. Now Future is an example of this as well as the inventions and insights that have occured in recent years.

Art and science don't work seperately, though it sometimes might seem that way. Just look at Galileo and Einstein. Einstein's book, The World as I See It has some beautiful writing and artistic thought. Galileo had hundreds of inventions and ideas. They have displayed that art and science work together to imagine logical ideas. Though art and science see the world in different ways, they help eachother to see things they normally wouldn't see. If we wanted to be general, we could say science deals with logic and art deals with imagination.

As humans we have two hemispheres in our brain. Our left hemisphere and our right hemisphere. These affect our learning and thinking in different ways. Our left hemisphere is logic or science-orienated and our right one is imagination or art-orienated. Jill Taylor can give us understanding into the full world of both these hemispheres. In 1996 she suffered a massive left brain hemmorage. As a Harvard-trained neuroanatomist her recovery was difficult but gave her keen, imaginative and logical insight into these hemispheres.

She has said that we have two parts and that our imagination is a method for peace on this earth. "I believe that the more time we spend choosing to run the deep inner peace circuitry of our right hemispheres, the more peace we will project into the world and the more peaceful our planet will be." Seeing as how she had to use her left brain for her explanation, it shows that she doesn't believe in abandoning logic. Logically understanding how we can use our imagination for peace is essential achieving peace.

"We are the life force power of the universe, with manual dexterity and two cognitive minds. And we have the power to choose, moment by moment, who and how we want to be in the world." - Jill Taylor

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