The Dream and the Word


The Dream and the Word


25 × 17.5 cm | 7 × 10 in

120 ills | 80 pages

Editor: Duncan McCorquodale

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The Dream and the Word provides a unique insight into artist Susan Hiller’s approach to thinking and working during her residency at Fondazione Antonio Ratti in 2011. The book outlines the dream workshops and seminars that Hiller conducted during the course.

Susan Hiller was the Visiting Professor at the Fondazione Antonio Ratti in 2011. Hiller is an innovative and influential artist who has been working in Britain since the 1970s. She juxtaposes knowledge derived from anthropology, psychoanalysis and other scientific disciplines with materials generally considered unimportant, such as postcards, wallpaper, popular films and stories of UFO sightings, balancing the familiar and the unexplained and inviting the viewer to participate in the creation of meaning. Her practice often investigates subconscious processes through works based on her extensive collections of cultural materials, including dreams, levitation images, visionary experiences and aura photographs. Through her innovative use of technology, Hiller explores the paradoxical and fascinating relationship of film, video, recorded sound and photography to the ghosts of much older occult and magical traditions.

The starting point of this book is Hiller’s project called The Dream Seminar II, which took place in summer 2011 and included young artists at the Fondazione Antonio Ratti. This project, based on an early work of hers from 1973, was an investigation into the sources of images and ideas. Participants were asked to create dream notebooks and to share their dreams. The project was conceived as a collaborative work, or proposal for a collective work, based on these experiences. The Dream and the Word contains sketches, texts, diagrams and notebook pages focusing on individual dreams and the relationships between dreams, narratives and images, and provides a unique insight into Hiller’s approach to thinking and working.