Project Dream: Flow Chart & Mid-term project review

Recap of Concept

“Project Dream” explores the gap between unconscious and reality. Our project is a space that recreates the different stages of sleep through various systems. A projection “showing” collected dreams will be played.

First draft:

Flow Chart

Our initial plan included a chair installed in the centre of the room, facing the projection, as a point of action that the user can make.

When the user enters the dark space, the alarms are turned on. The user can choose to sit down, which will trigger the projection to play. The alarms will go off when the specified time has passed and the alarm sounds will trigger the projection and LED lights in the room  to flicker. When the alarms are turned off, the LED lights remain on and the projection is off. No further change in the space would serve as an indication for the viewer to leave.

Mid-term Project Review – BODY STORMING

Recommended Arduino Experiments:
Due to our inexperience with Arduino, we tried 2 experiments from the projects book.

  • Light Theremin: Piezo buzzer is activated by the amount of light received by the photo-resistor. For our review, we switched the buzzer for a LED light to indicate the projection.
  • Digital Hourglass: Sets different timers indicated by LED lights, the breadboard has to be flipped to reset the system (“turning the alarms off”)

Process in midterm project review:
The viewer enters the room and the timers (alarms) of the digital hourglass is triggered. When the user sits down on the chair, the light the photo-resistor receives changes, triggering a projection to play “dreams” [when the LED light of the light theremin project goes off and video is played]. After a certain time passes, the alarms go off [when the LED lights of the digital hourglass turn on] and triggers a response from the projection and lights in the space. When the user turn the alarms off [flipping the breadboard], the system resets.


  • Unpredictability of the user: “What if the viewer does not sit on the chair?”
  • Focus on Narrative – What information or image do you want to present to the viewer?
  • Systems are too complicated – How can you guarantee that the user will follow each action?

– Instead of using a chair as a point of action, we are considering the use of a measure (heart-rate or motion) to trigger the projection.
> for example, if the heart-rate reaches a constant, it will trigger the projection to play
– Instead of a video, we can use text to represent a dream through story-telling.
> Using processing to collect dreams and display them
– Build an alarm system that can be turned off and reset

Project Development – Brainstorming & Proposal


Exploring the concept of interstice as dreams – metaphorical gaps between reality

Dreams occur during our sleep, where we are unconscious and not in control of what we see. They are often forgotten and seemed to serve no concrete purpose as compared to our conscious reality. Dreams cannot be recalled to its full detail and experience without conscious effort. While its narrative holds no limits, be it a joyful or horrific experience, it serves as an escape from our routine daily life.

Definition and Characteristics

Interactive Works as Inspiration:

DREAM 2.2 (2018)

Initial interactive ideas

  1. Dream as a movie – physical record of dreams
    The visual representation of dreams through story telling
    Idea: Exhibiting a ‘dream’ of participants
    The sleeping viewer serves as the input for interaction where emotional conditions (heart-rate, sweat glands, temperature, movement, etc) are measured to reflect the dream he is experiencing. As a response to the inputs, lights and projection can be used as indications of the emotional narrative of the dream, where it can be “experienced” by the viewer and be a form of story-telling to the watching viewers.
    Inspiration of set-up:

    Dream House by Marina Abramovic

    “Dream House” by Marina Abramovic is an experiential work where participants are live in a house overnight and sleep in conditions that facilitates dreaming. Their dreams are physically recorded in “dream books” the following morning.

    Issues and further questions:
    – Condition: how can we make sure the viewer is asleep?
    – Duration: how long will the work take if it involved dreaming and deep sleep of a single participant?
    – Interaction is pretty one-way, where the inputs result in a certain outcome.
    – The limitation of input by the viewer: Can the inputs be measured and have various outcomes?
    – In what way can we link different inputs to different outcomes? For example, does a fast heart rate indicate the emotion of fear and what light can be used to evoke the emotion?

  2. Dreams as a construct of random brain waves
    Idea: The viewer are in control of the narrative of the work by arranging a sequence of brain waves (alpha, beta, delta, theta)
    Input: Buttons of to send brain waves
    Output: images, light and soundIssues:
    – The interaction is too simple.
    – How can the output be best represented as a dream instead of a performance.


After discussing with my partner, we decided to explore the state of mind between sleeping and waking. We intend to explore interstice in a subtle manner, focusing on the gap between consciousness and unconsciousness.

Characteristics of sleep:

  • Comforting, calm, rest between the busyness of reality
  • Cycle of time: fall asleep to wake up
  • Dreams: unexplainable, abrupt, forgettable, ephemeral
  • Disrupted by reality

Creating a space that recreates the experience of sleeping and dreaming only to be disturbed by reality (alarms that disrupt rest). We want to use time and disruption as a physical representation of the moment one is awaken by reality. The space would response according to its conditions.

1. Wall of alarm clocks – Triggered by participant entering room
2. Projection of “dream” – Triggered by movement/ heart rate/ touch sensor
3. Lights – Triggered by sounds of alarms

Draft of sequence: