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Habit vs. originality how creativity works

Habit vs. originality how creativity works. Arthur Koestler's seminal "bisociation" theory.


Koestler coins the term bisociation to illustrate the combinatorial nature of creativity — the reason it operates like a slot machine, relies on the mind’s pattern-recognition machinery, and requires the synthesis of raw material into “new” ideas.

In this respect the artist gets a better deal than the scientist. The changes of style in the representative arts, the discoveries which altered our frames of perception, stand out as great landmarks for all to see. The true creativity of the innovator in the arts is more dramatically evident and more easily distinguished from the routine of the mere practitioner than in the sciences, because art (and humor) operate primarily through the transitory juxtaposition of matrices, whereas science achieves their permanent integration into a a cumulative and hierarchic order.

--From Arthur Koestler's Theory of Bisociation


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About the author

Artist Eric Deis

Eric Deis is a contemporary artist who lives and works in Vancouver, Canada. He is the creator & web master of Artist Run Website.

Eric was born on a Canadian military station in Haida Gwaii. He is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego (M.F.A.) and Emily Carr Institute of Art + Design, Vancouver (B.F.A.). His artwork has been exhibited in North America, Europe, and Asia.

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