August 13, 2007


Two Children Are Threatened by a Nightingale by Max Ersnt

I want to finish up my thoughts on Max Ernst and dreams. Wow, I really got a lot of content out of that one documentary! I had no idea how much it would give me to think about. I have thought a lot about inspiration and process and location and surrealism because of it. I had no idea he was such an influential figure...I guess sometimes the loudest and wildest get more of the attention (Dali, Duchamp) but sometimes the less known are just as much or even more important. Of course, I was not there at the time, maybe Ersnt was more visible than I am understanding, but he was less known to me. Anyway, I am pleased that watching one artist documentary can bring me so many thoughts. I am excited to explore more of them and I hope to discover more.

This collage/assemblage above is probably the piece I knew best before I watched the Ernst documentary. And I always sort of found it strange and beautiful, but now it makes more sense in context. It is very dream like, or perhaps nightmarish. Two children fleeing and fainting at the site of a little nightingale (again the appearance of the Ernst bird!) ...the man running for safety on the roof and finding a huge doorknob... the eerie sky and landscape... These are representative of those little things that we encounter in a nightmare. You know, the things that start out seemingly normal but then become out of control. Like a bird tormenting you, or your hands growing as big as your body (see video below). That mix of reality and surreality that wakes you up and makes you wonder if it was real. And then the moment of thinking, well that could never happen, or I would never feel that way...and realizing what seemed so real was just a dream.

As I mentioned yesterday, I don't remember my dreams very frequently. I am very interested in developing that aspect of my mind. I read a bit about lucid dreaming yesterday, and want to start keeping a dream journal. My grandpa used to remember his dreams very vividly, and he was able to almost nightly. I think Chuck remembers his dreams more than I do, and he has some good adventure and flying ones. The ones I remember are usually the test taking variety, or showing up to school naked or unprepared. But usually school is instead a show or a class I am teaching. I would love to learn more about dreams, and techniques to remember them or dream more. Anybody have links or thoughts about this? Please leave me a comment!

A dream sequence clip from Science of Sleep:


  1. Ohhh! Have fun with the dream journal! I usually have my best ideas just before falling off to sleep. Strange and wonderful world!

  2. You know what I really need is a little light for my bed. So I can write or sketch and read. I think I could be creative at night, but I need to be able to have the tools nearby, you know? I don't really have a bedstand, so its tricky...