SDM #1, Deepening Creative Practice

Day 2 of Spring Season

Thursday 30th April: 1.15 – 2.15pm

11 participants 

10 dreams

17 associations

The Matrix took place via Zoom

Many fragments of dreams were shared during the matrix, 6 dreams, followed by 2 associations, a further 2 dreams, followed by 11 associations, then another dream was presented, a further 2 associations, a final dream, and another 4 associations before the matrix ended.

A dream where the dreamer was on a highway, in one blocked lane of traffic, another clear except clowns/hippies on motorbikes. The dreamer didn’t want to pass them but found a way by.  Bits of dreams where the dreamer is moving around a building, a house, moving objects between rooms, in a protective mode, slightly aggressive. But there is confusion and slight unease as things are not in their place. A fragment of a dream where the boy who was pushed off the Tate Modern is replaced by a grandchild. The dreamer woke with a jump.

Dreams continued including one with an enormous wasp’s nest, loudly buzzing. The dreamer guides a big unknown guy to the train station with a sense of urgency. But the train irritatingly goes the other way.   The next is with the dreamer on holiday, but on the ocean floor lives their friend, now a fish/human hybrid. Showing that we can live underwater and self-sustain, eating fish eggs. But the friend’s fiancée despairs as they don’t like fish. The next dream features a tunnel or mine underground, on an apocalyptic journey, the family trying to find a seat in the carriage. They move into light to see a vegetable patch, to the house with the non-living there. The dreamer is emotional, their loved one not there.  

Associations made spoke of transformational objects and states, the Joker character. The next dream involves helping someone to kidnap and escape.  They’re in a big building, a house and are welcomed. There is lots of fruit and a helicopter helping, but identities and points of view are mixed.

Matrix members associated around fragmentation of dreams, identities, transgressive others that are threatening, and a questioning of what seems natural. There is both apocalypse and hope, filth and cannibalism. Finding Nemo is mentioned and Clowns without Borders. People talked of thresholds, doorways, cliffs, transition spaces and pausing on the edge of a threshold.  The need to categorise, make sense and challenge norms.  The line between complete freedom and violence that can come from transgression, the duality held in one.

A dream is offered where a work colleague is living with the dreamer and takes over their favourite part of the sofa. The dream transitions to a bus journey, with a family struggling to get over. But the dreamer holds her sister’s hand and smiles – to be in contact.

Associations around the emerging, the unexpected were made and whether things are to be fixed, if they are not right.

A dream has the dreamer’s nan outside drinking. The final associations talk of a complex and difficult journey together, the double newness of launching a programme and a changed world. Matrix members spoke of not being able to move, not going on a journey.  Maybe we are more nomad than we think. What is natural, when there is a lack of nature? The few references to nature in the dreams were noted and stood out.           

During the review, the members talked of how powerful, calm and grounding the matrix had felt. This strange situation of launching a programme during Covid, without having first all met in person, but a feeling of presence within the group and intimacy.   

In writing this note, I have been reminded of the Strange Situation procedure. It was designed by Mary Ainsworth to understand the attachment relationship between primary caregiver and child, as theorised by John Bowlby.  Perhaps there is something in this, as we all – participants, faculty and artists – take risks, play with the unknown and strange, drawing from our internal and external resources – whilst perhaps, now, missing some of the familiar that might give us a secure base.  We are maybe finding these in new, surprising and refreshing ways. Despite the potential for anarchy and impending apocalypse…             

Programme Director, Deepening Creative Practice

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