Jacob Mann

Hi, my name is Jacob Mann, I cover the Art Beat for the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman.

I’m at the final lap of my three-part series digging into the topic of art education and the value of creativity in our daily lives.

This article is the final intermission before the final conclusion to the series. I recently discovered a 2015 episode of National Geographic’s “Star Talk Radio” hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson titled, “The Science of Creativity.”

During the podcast, Tyson interviews a number of experts about the value of art education and the value of creative thinking carrying over to science, engineering, and other disciplines.

During Tyson’s interview with David Byrne of the Talking Heads, he talked about art education funding being constantly under stress across the nation.

“In order to really succeed in whatever, math, and the sciences, and engineering like that, you have to be able to think outside the box and you have to be creative problem solving… The creative thinking is in the arts. A certain amount of arts education doesn’t mean that your ambition is to grow up to be a painter, but you can use that can of thinking and apply it to anything else, business, engineering, science, and you’re better at that. You succeed more and you bring more to the world because you have these abilities that came from outside of your discipline. So, bringing different worlds together has definite, tangible benefits; and to kind of cut one or separate them is to injury them and cripple them.”

Tyson talked about this episode in a follow-up segment on the “Star Talk” television series. He said Byrne’s words really resonated with him.

“When I think of culture… If you visit other countries and then they show what it is that makes them, them, and not you; and in almost every case you do this, you’re looking at their art. You’re looking at their architecture. You’re looking at aspects of their civilization that have been empowered by science and engineering… It may be that science and art, which we know sort of go together. The arts and sciences are colleges of institutions. It may be that art and science thought of in that way are the only true things that we create, that last beyond ourselves. Everything else comes and goes, the leaders, the politics, the economies. So, am I biased? I don’t know. But what I do know is, if there is a country without art, that’s not a country I want to live in. If there’s a country without science, you’re living in a cave. We measure the success of a civilization by how well they treat their creative people.”

Anyone reading this who might be interested in providing their thoughts and possibly some quotes for the final part of this series can contact me anytime at 907-715-8717 or by email.

To listen to the full “Star Talk Radio” episode, visit startalkradio.net/show/the-science-of-creativity-with-david-byrne. I highly recommend it. He even talks to Bill Nye the Science Guy.

Contact Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman reporter Jacob Mann at jacob.mann@frontiersman.com

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