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Aug 8, 2010

The Ancient Steam Engine

And Yet, Holmes, 2007
Did you know that the first steam engine was conceived in the 1st century?  It was basically a toy then and remained so for centuries thereafter.  It wasn't until about 1600 years later that this creative idea was married to resources and opportunity to emerge as the machine that would drive the industrial revolution and change civilization forever!

I find it a shame that we humans always seem to operate so myopically.  Just think of how history could have unfolded if people actually worked together to cherish good ideas when they emerged instead of waiting (usually for a way to get rich) til all the right opportunities, like so many croquet wickets, are lined up for a straight shot!

Maybe you too sometimes feel like Leonardo, scrambling to write down all the ideas that come bursting out before they inevitably disappear like trees– one after another– around the bend of the river.  A great idea may be cute but it is worthless without a home.

In the 70's I once stumbled upon the messy little garage of a guy in Idaho who had just invented a car that got 80 miles to the gallon!  He was so excited to call Ford and be made fabulously wealthy!  People like that tend to disappear.  He was no doubt paid some paltry amount to shut him up and his invention was thrown onto the pile, never to be seen again because though his idea might have solved humanity's problem, the company doesn't look beyond its own immediate bottom line.  The same story happens over and over.  Is this really the best we humans can do?  So far, sadly, yes.

And yet...
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Tim Holmes Studio

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I'm a sculptor/filmmaker living in Montana, USA. I am using art to move the evolution of humanity forward into an increasingly responsive, inclusive and interactive culture. As globalization flattens peoples into a capitalist monoculture I hope to use my art to celebrate historical cultural differences and imagine how we can co-create a rich future together.

I see myself as an artist/philosopher laboring deep in the mines of joy. I've had a good long career of exhibiting work around the world and working on international outreach projects, most notably being the first American to be invited to present a one-person exhibit in the Hermitage Museum. Recently I have turned my attention from simply making metal sculpture to creating films and workshops for engaging communities directly, tinkering with the very ideas and mechanisms behind cultural transformation. I feel that as we face tragic world crises, if the human species favors our imaginative and creative capacities we can cultivate a rich world to enjoy.

For me the deepest satisfaction in making art comes in engaging people's real life concerns rather than providing simple entertainment or decoration. Areas of conflict or tension are particularly ripe for the kind of transformative power that art uniquely carries. I invite any kind of challenge that serves people on a deep level.