ON THE IMPORTANCE OF MAKING
We live in a constructed world of made objects and things.
We’re surrounded by an environment of objects in a state of constant flux. It’s constantly adapting, as we consume, buy more, make more and discard things, continuously.
All these objects and things are ‘made’ – that is, any object or thing that requires some degree of intervention or creation to come into existence.
This could be: a shelter, a path, a spearhead, a train, a plane, a pot, a sock or a book, a piece of music, even a leaf plucked from a tree, or a computer. The list is endless.
‘Made’ objects include handmade, technological or machined objects, which all appear within the lineage of making. Over time, each making process is adapted and evolves, from the first basket weavers, to the first rocket engineers
Let’s consider a single object or thing. It is particular to three overriding and essential factors that determine its existence. These are: the maker, the process and the environment.
When we make something, we (the maker) enter into a carefully balanced scenario. How we choose to make the object (the process) might depend on how we’ve seen it done before, how we ‘want’ to make it, how we ‘feel’ like making it, traditional skill or technical ability, it might depend on necessity or availability of materials, or a particular set of environmental circumstances.
All these factors come together in a rich soup that is unique in each instance to the object that is created. This object is added to a world of stuff (our environment), which shifts to accommodate the new arrival.
And so every object that is made is both specific to its environment and becomes part of that environment.
Published in Imagination Matters for the Institue of Imagination, 22nd March 2018.