Mid-Sleep Nightmare

2021, Single-Channel Video 

Mid-Sleep Nightmare comprises of eleven sections-dreams, allegedly seen as a nightmare in the course of a person’s sleep. Although each section-dream stands alone, together they unfold a fragmented story on culture industry that is twofold: (1) in relation to its influence on spectators and art; (2) in relation to its involvement on misperceptions of reality and on frail interactions of the individual with the world.

In Introduction, Adorno’s text sets the tone for the work’s understanding, without forcing it to a resolution. Some promises that Adorno’s text generates are kept, while others are not. The work is more than the text but is also less. This incomplete relation between text and visual helps the work to remain open while also focused.

Culture industry is viewed as “industry” in Industry Life Cycle sections (Industry Life Cycle: Growth and Industry Life Cycle: Decline) and in its relation to sexuality in Visual Masturbation. Room-Thing is a Beckettian style parody of art world’s antagonism between aspiring artists, “behind the scenes”. Sheep and Rain sees a similar problem at a larger scale, namely the relation between celebrity-icon and mass, a theme also explored in Industry Life Cycle: Decline and in Visual Masturbation. These sections deal with the first part of the story (spectacle and culture industry’s influence on spectators/art).

In Public Space the urban landscape becomes an audiovisual event, which the section To the Office picks up and develops to a familiar Hollywood action movie scenario. Together with Reality Television, they question what is the meaning of “seeing” today and its relation to the real. This exploration is continued in Topsy Turvy World where the engagement of the individual with the space is more surreal than the upside-down blue landscape itself. In Desert of the Real (quote from the movie “The Matrix”) what ultimately remains from the encounter of the individual with the world, is silence. These sections deal mostly with the second part of the story (spectacle and culture industry’s involvement to perception/interaction of the individual with reality/world).