Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art

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Penguin, May 1, 1991 - Self-Help - 224 pages
9 Reviews
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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.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jasoncomely - LibraryThing

Thick with references to Zen Buddhism, Taoism, mysticism and Christianity - Free Play shows us that the creative process is a spiritual path. There were moments I thought Nachmanovitch overelaborated with metaphors, but many more times when he took my breath away with deep insight. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dbsovereign - LibraryThing

Good book to read to remind yourself how 'serious' the sense of play truly is in nurturing creativity. Allowing ourselves the freedom to fail, we can become unencumbered by expectation and recreate a sense of childish abandon (and bliss). Vital reading in a world as out of touch as our's. Read full review


Title Page
The Vehicle
Mind at Play
Sex and Violins
The Power of Limits
Playing Together

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About the author (1991)

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

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