Sunday, March 30, 2008

Simplicity and complexity

"I would not give a fig for the simplicity this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity."

- Oliver Wendell Holmes

I've been thinking about this quote lately in many different contexts.

One context is theater. Isn't this what directors and actors try to do? Or, at least, some do? I think those who spend a lot of time analyzing a play and truly trying to understand every word in it are able to present a simple and elegant story that is the result of their journey through complexity.

However, those that choose simplicity by ignoring the complexity of the text they work with end up delivering a result that is often less than satisfying and fails to move the audience.

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