To make is to be by Hans Stofer.

(Inspiring Extract from Professor Hans Stofer’s keynote talk at the Craft Scotland Conference 2013)

What I like about making is that the pace of making dictates the pace of thinking. It is a bit like walking and thinking. This helps me to organize and structure my thoughts and allows the subconscious do the work.

There are many different types of making:

There is making to be in touch with what is real.

There is making to experience another reality.

There is making as thinking.

There is making as a reflective process.

There is making to visualize the unexpected and hidden.

There is making as revealing.

There is making to discover.

There is making to cover up.

There is making to produce stuff for others.

There is making not to have to feel.

There is making to let off steam.

There is making to help you focus your thoughts.

There is making to feel alive.

There is making to make sense.

There is making as an attitude.

There is making as identity.

There is thinking about making as an imagined form of making.

There is making as healing.

There is making as repair.

There is making as a form of object – rebirth.

And there is making as something that is essential to define the self.


But ultimately, to make is to hold OUR world between our hands.






On coincidences and Deja vú

I take comfort in the fact that there are two human moments that seem to be doled out equally and democratically within the human condition—and that there is no satisfying ultimate explanation for either. One is coincidence, the other is déja vu. It doesn’t matter if you’re Queen Elizabeth, one of the thirty-three miners rescued in Chile, a South Korean housewife or a migrant herder in Zimbabwe—in the span of 365 days you will pretty much have two déja vus as well as one coincidence that makes you stop and say, “Wow, that was a coincidence.”

The thing about coincidence is that when you imagine the umpteen trillions of coincidences that can happen at any given moment, the fact is, that in practice, coincidences almost never do occur. Coincidences are actually so rare that when they do occur they are, in fact memorable. This suggests to me that the universe is designed to ward off coincidence whenever possible—the universe hates coincidence—I don’t know why—it just seems to be true. So when a coincidence happens, that coincidence had to work awfully hard to escape the system. There’s a message there. What is it? Look. Look harder. Mathematicians perhaps have a theorem for this, and if they do, it might, by default be a theorem for something larger than what they think it is.

What’s both eerie and interesting to me about déja vus is that they occur almost like metronomes throughout our lives, about one every six months, a poetic timekeeping device that, at the very least, reminds us we are alive. I can safely assume that my thirteen year old niece, Stephen Hawking and someone working in a Beijing luggage-making factory each experience two déja vus a year. Not one. Not three. Two.

The underlying biodynamics of déja vus is probably ascribable to some sort of tingling neurons in a certain part of the brain, yet this doesn’t tell us why they exist. They seem to me to be a signal from larger point of view that wants to remind us that our lives are distinct, that they have meaning, and that they occur throughout a span of time. We are important, and what makes us valuable to the universe is our sentience and our curse and blessing of perpetual self-awareness.

Douglas Coupland.

On life..

It’s your life — but only if you make it so. The standards by which you live must be your own standards, your own values, your own convictions in regard to what is right and wrong, what is true and false, what is important and what is trivial. When you adopt the standards and the values of someone else or a community or a pressure group, you surrender your own integrity. You become, to the extent of your surrender, less of a human being.

Eleanor Roosevelt