Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art

Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art

by Stephen Nachmanovitch

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Overview

Free Play is about the inner sources of spontaneous creation. It is about where art in the widest sense comes from. It is about why we create and what we learn when we do. It is about the flow of unhindered creative energy: the joy of making art in all its varied forms.

Free Play is directed toward people in any field who want to contact, honor, and strengthen their own creative powers. It integrates material from a wide variety of sources among the arts, sciences, and spiritual traditions of humanity. Filled with unusual quotes, amusing and illuminating anecdotes, and original metaphors, it reveals how inspiration arises within us, how that inspiration may be blocked, derailed or obscured by certain unavoidable facts of life, and how finally it can be liberated - how we can be liberated - to speak or sing, write or paint, dance or play, with our own authentic voice.

The whole enterprise of improvisation in life and art, of recovering free play and awakening creativity, is about being true to ourselves and our visions. It brings us into direct, active contact with boundless creative energies that we may not even know we had.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780874776317
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/01/1991
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 104,672
Product dimensions: 5.04(w) x 7.99(h) x 0.57(d)
Age Range: 18 - 14 Years

About the Author

Stephen Nachmanovitch is a musician, author, computer artist, and educator. He is an improvisational violinist, and writes and teaches about improvisation, creativity, and systems approaches in many fields of activity

Read an Excerpt

Table of Contents

 
Title Page

Copyright Page

Epigraph

Acknowledgements

Introduction

 
The Sources

Inspiration and Time’s Flow

The Vehicle

The Stream

The Muse

Mind at Play

Disappearing

 
The Work

Sex and Violins

Practice

The Power of Limits

The Power of Mistakes

Playing Together

Form Unfolding

 
Obstacles and Openings

Childhood’s End

Vicious Circles

The Judging Spectre

Surrender

Patience

Ripening

 
The Fruits

Eros and Creation

Quality

Art for Life’s Sake

Heartbreakthrough

 
Notes

Bibliography

Illustrations

About the Author

Most Tarcher/Putnam books are available at special quantity discounts for bulk purchases for sales promotions, premiums,
 
 
Jeremy P. Tarcher/Putnam a member of Penguin Putnam Inc.
The author thanks the following for their permission to reprint from copyrighted works.

 
Constance Crown, for Hands by Rico Lebrun.
 
p. cm.
ISBN: 9781440673085

1. Creation (Literary, artistic, etc.) 2. Improvisation (Music)
 
Paint as you like and die happy.

HENRY MILLER

Acknowledgments

The following are only a few of the many friends and colleagues whose support, criticism, ideas, and other contributions were vital to the creation of this book:

(Continues…)



Excerpted from "Free Play"
by .
Copyright © 1991 Stephen Nachmanovitch.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Free PlayPrologue: A New Flute
Introduction

The Sources
Inspiration and Time's Flow
The Vehicle
The Stream
The Muse
Mind at Play
Disappearing

The Work
Sex and ViolinsPractice
The Power of Limits
The Power of Mistakes
Playing Together
Form Unfolding

Obstacles and Openings
Childhood's End
Vicious Circles
The Judging Spectre
Surrender
Patience
Ripening

The Fruits
Eros and Creation
Quality
Art for Life's Sake
Heartbreakthrough

Notes
Bibliography
Illustrations

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Stephen Nachmanovitch has produced a celebration of human uniqueness. What it amounts to is a guide for gettingthe most out of whatever is possible"
—Norman Cousins, author of The Anatomy of an Illness

"This is an unusually intense, packed, thought-through book on the most difficult subject in the world: mystic creativity. If you wantto be intellectually informed about how people actually craete things, then you should read it at least once."
—Robert Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

"Would that Free Play found its way into every school, office, hospital, and factory. It is a most exciting book and a most important one."
Yehudi Menuhin, violinist

"Nachmanovitch tells it like it is in the most important book on improvisation I've yet seen."
Keith Jarrett, pianist

"Free Play is a superb guide for anyone who aspires to create, whatever medium."
—New Woman

"This book is important not only because it delves into the creative process, but also because Nachmanovitch creates the opportunity for the reader to get in touch with her/his own creative possibilities and abilities."
—Harvard Educational Review
 

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