BOOK REVIEW | Creativity Explained – from Music and Art to Innovation in Business


by David Priilaid | Associate Professor at the University of Cape Town (UCT) |

Creativity and imagination are key catalysts to unlocking potential in the 21st century.

While those in business and civil society are generally aware of its challenges, few seem able to understand or apply the creativity necessary to meet them. Creativity Explained argues that the most direct route to imaginative insight lies in understanding how genuinely creative people develop their big ideas.

Focusing on the lives of contemporary writers, musicians and artists, Priilaid examines the elements of the creative process to provide readers with a better appreciation of creativity in practice. Through looking at the work of figures such as Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, Bill Evans, Jackson Pollock, J.K. Rowling and the iconic Steve Jobs, he shows how artists are typically outsiders, marked by the extent of their suffering, resilience and love for the work they do.

In Creativity Explained, Priilaid presents an insightful overview of the imaginative mindset and disciplines crucial to the formulation of great ideas.

David Priilaid pulls back the curtain on the process,the passion, the pain and ultimately the pleasure of creating. An insightful read with references to contemporary artists such as Springsteen, Dylan,Cohen, Hemingway, Matisse and many more.

David Kramer – Singer, songwriter, & playwright

This book is a tour de force… providing a perspectiveof the creative DNA that underlies the outgrowths of the creativity industries, including entrepreneurial organisations such the new social media andcomputer giants. … It outlines theoreticalrelationships that offer important insights into what contributes to ‘big ideas’ and the improvement of the creative process itself.

Professor Chris Callaghan – School of Economic and Business Sciences, WITS University

Recognising that many exciting innovations happen at the often-strange interfaces between diverse disciplines, Priilaid provides a timely signpost to the increasingly important linkages between art, science and business. … A book that delves into understanding the dynamics of creativity by analysing how creative people develop their ideas provides a thoughtful and helpful service to aspiring artists and entrepreneurs alike.

Professor Geoff Garrett AOFormer Chief Executive, CSIR (South Africa) and CSIRO (Australia)

Published by Peter Flack Productions |




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