a collaboration by
Thelma Mathias &
The Elizabeth Foundation 323 West 39th Street,
New York City
Project Bulgaria, NY (Bulgarian & American Artists),
November 1 to 28, 2000
Photographs and texts mount on cardboard, cord, cite specific installation.
Gentle breezes enable continuous movement of Dream Space, spanning 17 feet. Sprinkled with graphic, large format images of eyes among photos that are over 100 years old and transcribed dreams, forming a curtain that takes no space, in reality.
The dreams and photos are mounted on small pieces of ordinary cardboard on both sides, strung up on fishline, floor to ceiling building this illusory mosaic of intrinsic power. This architectonic installation commands attention as it spans across the center of the gallery, drawing the viewer into its deceptive delicacy and attention to detail.
The dreams belong to Bulgarians and Americans of varying ages, men and women, randomly scattered throughout* There is a desire to create analytic narrative from the combinations of photos, to question the relationships between the portraits, of time and place and authorship of the dreams.
There is the color of the natural materials - the white of the paper for the dreams, the cardboard, clearly visible and the photos; the subtle tints of the sepia tones of the old images and then the sometimes blue or pink tones of the contemporary ones. But in general, color is a consideration only when it has meaning, i.e. it is not decorative.
The collaboration of these artists has trully acheived an egoless blend, so that one cannot discern from which culture the dreams or photo derive.
It is interesting to note that Mathias contributed a collection of photos from an American immigrant of her pre-World War II family from an eastern European country. How does the collective unconscious transcend or reflect cultures? How do very different realities become processed in the dream state? Are age and gender factors in content and memory of dreams? Art can serve* as entrance to the surreal, erasing cultural barriers and captivating our imaginations, Mathias and Panayotova have done just that.