MaDe in MinD
‘MaDe in MinD’ explores unconscious perception. Based on Jungian theory, the film investigates how we function in the absence of subjective awareness and directs our attention to the importance of embedded symbolism. The multi-layered meaning of symbols is revealed through the creation processes of a painting.
The idea to create this film was generated by the union of two very separate events: one was the 1 hour long drive commuting between Grantham and Nottingham, which I had to do so many times that at the end I realised that I don’t remember any of it. The actual act sunk to the level of my unconscious. It felt like it became a story, similar to a fairy-tale that has a meaning beyond the obvious story it’s telling. The other component was the creation process of my so called dream-carpets. These paintings of mine represent a transitory period from figurative works towards the abstract, and ‘As Above, so Below’ -the painting in the film- is a dream-carpet itself.
The dream-carpet is a phrase I created to describe a series of my works. C.G. Jung’s apprentice, Marie-Louise von Franz, in the Interpretation of Fairy Tales (a book explaining the meaning of recurring fairy tale elements) describes the carpet as “a symbol for the complex symbolic patterns of life and the secret designs of fate” representing the greater pattern of our life, which can only be recognised when looking from afar, from a certain objective distance and can be better understood with the help of our unconscious which communicates with us through dreams.
My dream-carpets refer to the secret design behind the ephemeral actions and decisions of human beings. These drawings and paintings are not interpretations of reality but more like secondary, appropriated images; the overlapping symbolic, dream-based figurative elements create a new, carpet pattern-like structure. Through the multiple layering process, overlapping of elements and different ways of masking they lose their figurative quality.
The film itself mirrors my creation process in a sense that it is less consistent at the beginning, but, just like with a painting: once I am more sure of what I am doing it gets more focused. It’s like mixing the ingredients of dough first and then shaping it, giving it form.
Also, it is multi-layered and contains a lot of peeling-off, just like the dream-carpets.
The most important message of the film is that it is time we see differently; and despite the rational outlook on life and the reasonableness of the ego caused by it, it is worth to pay attention to symbolism because it adds a certain richness to one’s life. Even though we do not live surrounded by fairy tales, myths and legends anymore as much as our ancestors did, we still can get closer to that collective unconscious Jung talks about, and live a richer life, drawing on the collective knowledge of the ages and hence “not cutting with our knives into our own inner carpet”.
Having a conversation about the film with some Hungarian artists made me realise that the actual act of driving on the other side stands as a metaphor for living in a new country, and therefore relates to the issues of displacement, asylum seeking and migration as well.
[1, 2] von Franz, M. L. (1996). The Interpretation of Fairy Tales. Boston: Shambala (p. 78)