An investigation into Social Dreaming Constellations

Dreamscape is a practical investigation into Social Dreaming Constellations, participatory processes and collaboration. Film editor Zuzanna Kilmova and I collaborated on developing an immersive and participatory performance process.

This performance process began with three consecutive days of Social Dreaming Constellations as a means to facilitate the emergence of the known unknown in relation to a specific time and space, Belfast 2010. The sessions were well attended and connected into the dream/awake state readily. We worked for 90 minutes each day.


I sat in the front row of a symphony orchestra beside some girls and we all had violins. My seat turned out to be much smaller than the others. Also I can’t play violin. I had the score on my knee or on a table in front of me as the orchestra were paying and, surprisingly, I could, sort of read it, follow the music as they were playing. I could match a few tones on the violin also.

On the third day the dreamers were given a worksheet, a disposable camera and a stamped addressed envelope in which to return the materials when the mission was complete. The worksheet asked them to engage with 20 or so tasks taking them into places where they would not usually go and observing human behaviors which may not always be obvious in daily life. We asked them to break their habitus and observe and document their personal responses in writing and by taking photos with their disposable cameras.

All materials were returned. The video below includes a collage of their images, audio recordings from the Dreaming Constellations, and the artists interpretation of the emergent theme of the participatory process. The original sound-scape was composed by Simon Milligan using the vocal recordings from the Social Dreaming Constellations.


I was afraid that I was not able to program my computer correctly and that when we were going to leap to another time-space I would be left behind.
There were people in cloaks.
Like elder. Like wisdom.
Like fear. Like un-human.
Like masked. Like dark.
The pit was an abyss.
The world was a dessert.
There were signs of machine life. There were bits of metal about the place.
People knew what was going on. I didn't.
People knew what direction to walk in.
When they turned away from me I panicked.