Happy Birthday: Lisa Norton

Lisa Norton is a contemporary artist focused on design and its relationship to embodiment studies, meta theory, integral theory, and wellness.

I was not familiar with Norton before today and wow am I glad I bumped into her research. She bridges art with life through a curiosity for integral design. Just check out this excerpt from her bio:

Lisa Norton is inspired by integrative designing practices that create the conditions for flourishing and inclusive cultures. Responding consciously to the complexity of our world expands both the responsibility and the potential influence of professional designers. --- Lisa emphasizes the fundamental role of conscious embodied awareness in designing collaboratively for the emergence of relationships, systems, services, structures, and organizations that care for life._Source

Her website has informative blog posts and a bibliography that I bookmarked for future reference. I spent some time reading a post titled "Designing Criteria for Happiness" in which she interviewed Philipp Guzenuk. The topic was how to turn work into energy. He described 7 rivers of energy and then continued to discuss the pros and cons of each.

  1. find meaning
  2. be in flow
  3. learn from work
  4. be optimistic
  5. love
  6. play
  7. influence

Flow especially interested me since it happens often when making art. He says flow can be addictive and then destructive if trying to artificially create the state with drugs or unhealthy habits. He suggests getting out of the "river" sometimes and balance it with time on the "river banks". Ah, balance!!! :) I'm definitely going to add some of her recommendations to my reading list!

"Every human being is a designer. The world-making power of designing is hidden in plain sight as the unintentionally designed consequences of our human ways of being. More than a mere tool of aesthetics and styling, design is the raw potential to convert human will into all we hold dear - and all that threatens."~Lisa Norton