… the sleeper returns to a primary state and attempts to experience in the dream that which during the day he [sic] kept under strict control for the sake of reality considerations.
Anna Freud, 1981
Titled after an apparently innocuous sentence written by Anna Freud in an introduction to one of her father’s essays on dreams, Reality Considerations (for the sake of) looks at the ways psychologies and thus subjects are produced through the spatial, temporal, systemic and economic structures shaping our world.
This exposition is inspired by the work of social materialist psychologist David Smail, who argues for a psychology whose prime focus is on the relations of power – both immediate and distal – affecting people’s lives, instead of upon the subject’s internal desires, motivations, beliefs and intentions. This approach is a controversial one in neoliberal times, for it claims that the way we each feel and think is not chiefly an isolated, private, individual problem but rather a social, economic, and unquestionably political one. The depoliticisation of psychological concerns in our society appears strictly commensurate with all other privatising imperatives therein; the ideology of the screen is just one notable example. Refusing individual responsibility for psychic distress is not a weak confession that our problems run too deep to handle alone. Instead, the refusal to privatise and internalise this responsibility makes claim for each psyche as being necessarily and primarily a social production, which must therefore be approached on a societal level.
Reality Considerations explores these positions and themes through works by artists practicing in video, sculpture and performance; through the documentary ‘Hidden Depths’ (1989)*, directed by the late Nina Burr and featuring David Smail; as well as in a parallel publication that includes contributions from artists and writers, including Catherine Borra, Tom Clark, Amelia Groom, João Laia and JD Reforma.
curated by Eleanor Ivory Weber
Brian Fuata – 4pm Saturday 17/11/12
Matte Rochford – 4pm Saturday 1/12/12
REALITY CONSIDERATIONS (FOR THE SAKE OF)
Filipa Cesar / Bea Fremderman / Georgia Kaw / Asta Meldal Lynge / Yasmin Smith