Artist Statement

This series of work is based on my feelings about particular dreams of my childhood that keep coming back with similar scenarios. I have been writing my dream journal for 6 years. I dream almost every night, and I often remember most of the details in my dreams. Dreams allow me to be connected to my subconscious and memory world, letting me experience another reality of time and space with people that I know and do not know. To me, a dream has both surrealistic and realistic qualities. I often feel that this fiction seems to be able to create a sense of reality more than the truth. I observe my dreams as they are, and I do not look backwards over my past even if it is reflected in my dreams darkly, because I believe it is the nature of dreams. I just recognize it and sometimes try to analyse what I have in my subconscious.

Like a phenomenon, most events in dreams happen unexpectedly during sleep, even though lucid dreams are controllable by the dreamer. The dream realm is mysterious, as we know. We experience something visual when our eyes are closed. The phenomenon of dreams, for me, is like going to a night cinema, although each “short film” starts with no clue and I naturally become an audience and actress of my own “mind theatre”. It can show fantasy, horror, suspense, nonsense… but, the one which has been persistently obsessing me is something to do with my past – which is my old childhood memories. These dreams provide me similar riddles each time and they always disappear before I solve the issues. What do they mean to me now?

As a photographer, I have tried to portray the mood and impression that I had got from my dreams and subconscious world. It does not matter to me that I am not able to bring my camera into my dreams, since I am not interested in describing what I have actually seen in dreams through my photography. I have used inspiration from my dreams in order to find the metaphors that create other visual dimensions in the real world. With this body of work, I have tried to visualize Echoes of Childhood as feelings of hidden fixation on my childhood. These dreamscapes, through a hint of the past, are about an introspective search for the meaning of this psyche in the present. I hope that these images will become a vehicle to carry the viewers’ minds towards their own dreams.

Reiko Imoto