Rexburg Cultural Arts Director to offer 'Creative Clusters' class

Rexburg Cultural Arts Director Jed Platt will oversee a “Creative Clusters” class at the Romance Theater every Tuesday starting Jan. 18. It is a free course open to anyone with an interest in developing talents.

Photo courtesy of Rexburg Arts | Standard Journal

Everybody can be inventive, says Rexburg’s Cultural Arts Director Jed Platt.

“There’s creativity in all of us,” he said.

And to prove his point, Platt will hold a “Creative Clusters” class at 6:30 p.m. every Tuesday starting Jan. 18 at the Romance Theater, 2 E. Main St. The class is free, open to anyone with an interest and will run for 12 weeks.

Platt plans to use the book “The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity” written by Julia Cameron. The book may be found on Amazon.com.

Of note, Julia Cameron is the sister of James Cameron who produced the movie “Titanic,” Platt said.

“She is called ‘the Queen of Change.’ The book was written 30 years ago, but it’s still relevant,” he said.

Platt won’t be teaching the class but instead will be a part of students’ conservations and thoughts on being creative.

“It’s just a free discussion, a weekly free discussion about art and creativity and where you are in that journey,” he said. “There is no set agenda. It’s for anyone who wants to explore their creative makeup. It’s in all of us.”

During various monthly “Art Strolls” Platt organizes, participants have asked him about Rexburg artists and cultural activities.

“They’ll say, ‘Where are my arty people?’ The class is a way to connect in creative conversations. It’s just a place to start,” he said.

Platt has received interest in the class.

“I’ve had several people inquire about it,” he said. “They’ll say ‘Oh, I’ve always wanted to do that. This will be the thing to check it off my bucket list.’”

Cameron’s book has received numerous accolades, including one from film director Martin Scorsese.

“This is a book that addresses a delicate and complex subject. For those who will use it, it is a valuable tool to get in touch with their own creativity,” Scorsese said.

The book is self-guided and contains 12 assignments.

“It’s designed to help people overcome any block they may have around their creativity,” Platt said. “People have said this class is kind of the AA for artists. It’s a 12-step program.”

The book focuses on journal writing. At the end of each lesson, Cameron urges her students to write three pages — in longhand — of stream-of-consciousness writing every morning.

“Welcome to the morning pages. They will change you,” she says in her book.

Platt says that he’s wanted to explore the book for many years, and for his 2022 New Year’s resolution, he decided to do so via the class. The expectation is that the book will teach class participants that they can be creative. If they don’t feel like they are, it’s because they’ve been “blocked,” Platt said.

Platt says that students may come away from the class realizing that they have the aptitude for writing, painting and any other talent.

“This may give them the encouragement they need to do that. Let’s take a closer look at the creativity within,” Platt said.

Rexburg Mayor Jerry Merrill said he’s delighted that Platt is hosting such a creative class.

“It sounds like something pretty interesting. It sounds like a good idea,” Merrill said. “I think it would be a great opportunity for people to find out more about themselves and what they’re capable of.”

Merrill says that Platt comes up with a lot of fun and creative things for residents to do.

“He’s always doing something,” he said.

Later this month on Jan. 27, Platt plans to show the movie “Somewhere in Time” at 7 p.m. at the Romance Theater. The 1980 fantasy film stars Jane Seymour and the late Christopher Reeve.

“We’re bringing back fan favorites,” Platt said. “One of our staff says she saw that movie at the Romance when she was a student here.”

Platt is asking residents to send him suggestions of films they’d like to see on the big screen later this year.

For more information on the upcoming Creative Clusters class, visit facebook.com/rexburgarts.