January 11, 2016 \ Arts & Culture
by Nicola Walls
In the Arts world, ‘how resilient you are?’ is a question that is often being asked. Resilience is the art of anticipating challenges and the capacity to absorb, deflect, weather, overcome or deviate around the obstacles that inevitably get in the way. Every organisation intuitively or systematically prepares to a lesser or greater extent for these situations that threaten to blow you off course. You hope the plans put in place work, but until tested you don’t really know.
Resilience as a concept can also be applied to the stance, position, angle of your artistic and in our case architectural ideas. Do they stand up to the test of delivery if looked at in the short term, the pragmatics of use in the medium term or the longevity of appropriateness of the long distance view.
As an exercise in abstracting the qualities of resilient design, our beginning of the year Arts and Culture Review explored the value system of the five senses as an underlying foundation for artistic experience. They explored the social systems, the café’s and bar’s and their associated culinary values that surround and prop artistic endeavour, prompted the principle of an enhanced openness to the aural settings, scoped the potential of light to serve both the intimate and the spectacular, advocated the texture of touch as a quality of rooting to a place and romanticised the linger of memorable smells.
Most of us are lucky to still have most of our senses, what we put them through in terms of abuse, bad food, crude sound environments, startling light levels, scratchy textures or rough inhalations, shows that whilst the senses remain resilient, they are no filter to the quality of experience. That filter is our sense of the importance of our arts and culture translated into the means by which we seek beauty, embrace the special aromas, emphasise the tactile, toast excellence and listen out for pleasure.
What emerges is that if our world and environment is not to be an overwhelmingly crude experience then it is incumbent on us to protect the art of experience that has been bequeathed to us but at the same time create space for the contemporary take on our future endeavours.