A Dream Of A Real Memory is a devised drama featuring three characters set within a green screen cyclorama. Primarily, abstract movement and dance are employed as metaphoric means to engage ideas of tension and power dynamics implicit in relationships between people, or in individuals’ internal pursuit of their own self-identity.
The footage of the sixty-two-minute video work, screened in daily two-minute episodes over 31 days, is reversed, beginning at "the end” of the performance, showing the performers' tired bodies and messy makeup, and ending at “the beginning” of the performance. The backwards motion of the work is analogous with the distorted and fantastical-seeming realm of both dreams and memories, which though connected to reality can also warp and misrepresent it. Also, by revealing the filmmaker himself, the fracturing of the fourth wall emphasises the deceptive boundaries which dreams, memories, and reality possess.
‘The work employs the specific characteristics of the Piccadilly screen to create a narrative work that also criticises (laterally, not explicitly) the manipulative means by which capitalist machinery such as advertising entwines itself within our lives, deliberately playing on our desires, our anxieties and so on. I like that this is a work about relationships (in the broadest possible sense of the word) and the looping thought patterns of an obsessive, depressive or psychotic mind, placed within that context.’
A Dream Of A Real Memory is a development of Peake’s live performance and performance-to-camera works, as well as a continuation of his interest in the screen as a physical object and conduit for the blending of multiple realities. The green screen is featured as a deliberately visible element and could be a fourth character within the drama, or perhaps even its protagonist. Normally an unseen functional device of cinema, TV and advertising, the green screen is experienced here as prominently as the performers, a block of infinite green framing their movements.
Visitors to Piccadilly Circus can connect their headphones to WWW.CIRCA.ART and receive a fully immersive audio-visual experience. The website also streams the artwork every evening at c.20:20GMT and hosts supporting content alongside past archives of CIRCA commissioned works from Cauleen Smith and Ai Weiwei.