Turner Prize-winning art collective Montage has co-designed a new immersive experience exploring the “extraordinary” potential of the human mind.
That Dreamchine uses twinkling lights and sound, composed by Grammy-nominated composer John Hopkins, to take viewers on a visual journey experienced through closed eyes.
The experience was inspired by artist-inventor Brian Gaisin, whose in-house 1959 device was designed to be “the first artwork to be experienced with your eyes closed.”
Dreamachine’s rich kaleidoscope world will come from within, providing a magical insight into the extraordinary potential of our own minds.Jennifer Crook
He used flickering lights to create vivid illusions, kaleidoscope patterns and bursts of color in the mind, and hoped that his invention would replace TVs in homes across America as audiences created their own cinematic experiences.
More than 60 years after its original invention, the director of Collective Act, Jennifer Crook, assembled, together with Hopkins, Tony Award-winning sound designer Christopher Schutt and a team of scientists and philosophers to re-imagine the DreamChain as a new collective experience. brought together to
Ms Crook, who is overseeing the project’s creative vision, direction and management, said DreamChain “offers an insight into the everyday wonders of consciousness”.
He added: “DreamMachine will connect audiences across ages and cultures in one powerful and transformative collective experience.
“The rich kaleidoscope world of DreamChain will come from within, providing a magical insight into the extraordinary potential of our own minds.
“Beyond the confines of screens or devices, our program will creatively explore the most fundamental of human connection: how we perceive and understand the world
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“To find out one of the greatest remaining mysteries to mankind, all you need to do is close your eyes.”
The London-based Collective Assemblage, which won the 31st Turner Prize for its socially engaging and politically relevant art, has designed a space where spectators will sit and share multisensory experiences.
The montage said: “The DreamChain experience is unique in that it is highly individualized and yet experienced in a group setting.
“It’s not very often that people will come into a public setting and have such a deeply personal moment that is shared with strangers.”
Hopkins said that scoring a score for the experience was like “building a sort of Sonic Palace”.
He continued: “I have always been fascinated by the connection between music and consciousness and its ability to unlock the infinitely rich imagery that exists in our subconscious.
“DreamMachine is also an incredibly immersive audio experience – with 86 speakers to play with, I was able to compose in a whole new way, moving voices within a true 3D space.”
DreamChain is one of 10 government-funded creative projects commissioned as part of Unboxed: Creativity in the UK.
Arts Minister Lord Parkinson said: “Dreammachine is a wonderful, immersive sound and light journey that will capture people’s imagination and celebrate the power of the human mind.
“It promises to be a truly unforgettable experience for anyone visiting – and it’s completely free.
“We are pleased to provide government funding for this as part of our plan to open up access to arts and culture through Unboxed: Creativity in the UK.”
DreamChain opens at the Grade II-listed Woolwich Public Market in London on 10 May and will also travel to Cardiff, Belfast and Edinburgh.