Dream and Trauma
Works from the Dakis Joannou Collection, Athens
Edited by Gerald Matt, Angela Stief, Edelbert Köb. Texts by Elisabeth Bronfen, Edelbert Köb, Gerald Matt, Hilary Rubenstein Hatch, Angela Stief.
Sigmund Freud defined trauma as “an experience which, within a short period of time, presents the mind with an increase of stimulus too powerful to be dealt with or worked off in the normal way.” The subject represses the traumatic experience, which then begins to enter into consciousness through its only other avenue, the dream--or, quite often, the nightmare. In art, psychological pain often finds expression in surrealistic, dreamlike or seemingly absurd images. Thus, the “aesthetics of trauma” makes visible those things that have been repressed, that are depraved or that expose painful wishes, desires or dreams. This provocative collection brings together artworks by some of the most psychologically tapped-in (and, in some cases, unhinged) artists in the contemporary field--all of whom are represented in the world-famous Dakis Joannou Collection of Athens, Greece. They include Cindy Sherman, Paul McCarthy, Pavel Althamer, Maurizio Cattelan, Paul Chan, Nigel Cooke, Gregory Crewdson, Marcel Dzama, Olafur Eliasson, Urs Fischer, Anna Gaskell, Robert Gober, Matt Greene, Jeff Koons, William Kentridge, Paul McCarthy, Tim Noble and Sue Webster, Chris Ofili, Kiki Smith, Nari Ward, Ralf Ziervogel and many others.