I have at last discovered a technical name for what we makers commonly call creativity. The light-bulb moment came as I read an email from my friend Suprabha Seshan, who writes from Paradise, The Western Ghats, Kerala, India (aka The Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary):



Plants, it seems, like some action: they get stronger, stouter, healthier. They develop good form, great character. They like the caress of the breeze, they like animals brushing by, they like fat raindrops bouncing off their leaves. In other words, plants, like babies and puppies (and adult humans!), love contact: they like to be touched.

There is a weird name for this. Thigmomorphogenesis. Thingummy what?

Thigmo….morpho….genesis.  Touch….form….create.

– Suprabha Seshan

Touch – form – create.

Take out brushes, caress tenderly; line up colors, mix respectfully; wedge clay, massage lovingly.

Lay down brushstrokes, watch form appear unbidden; play with clay (or paper, gold, steel), fondle forms as they emerge.

Create from wonder, from play, from accident, from chance encounter.

This is the way of the artist – and the way of Life living healthily and holistically, in relationship with every ‘other’ life-form. Thigmomorphogenesis!

Find out more about the Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary:

Blog : ‘Three and a half Hills’:


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