“Art is also about problem solving, and it’s obvious from the news, we have a little bit of a problem with problem solving. In my experience, the main obstacle to problem solving is an entrenched ideology. The great thing about making a movie or a piece of art is that that never comes into play. All the ideas are on the table. All the ideas and everything is open for discussion, and it turns out everybody succeeds by submitting to what the thing needs to be. Art, in my view, is a very elegant problem-solving model.”

Stephen Soderbergh, from a talk at the San Francisco International Film Festival in April of this year.

There have been many discussions over the years as to whether woodworking is a craft or art. If you substitute the word “woodworking” for “art” in the first sentence, and think about “entrenched ideology” as “not going beyond the techniques I’m comfortable with”, it becomes clear that whether you think that woodworking is simply a craft or not, thinking about woodworking the same way that Soderbergh thinks about art is the way to go.

All the ideas are on the table, indeed.

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