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First Dream


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  • First Dream, 2017, Brittany Sostar.
    First Dream, 2017, Brittany Sostar.

Brittany Sostar, Gallery Attendant | April 13, 2018

I was greeted into 2017 by a series of dreams. Oddly enough, I haven't had a dream that I’ve been able to remember for many years - and to top it all off was the timing of things. A new dream at the start of a new year felt to be too much of a coincidence to go unexplored. Over the past weeks, I’ve been looking into the significance and meaning behind a first dream, and an internet search has led me to two main results.

The first result was for Hatsuyume, which is a Japanese word meaning the first dream had in the New Year. It is believed that the contents of a first dream could reflect one's luck throughout the upcoming year. In Japanese culture, the luckiest things to see within a Hatsuyume dream are an eggplant, a hawk, or the Fuji Mountain. I didn’t see those particular images within my dream, so I turned to dream dictionaries to help interpret the meanings behind what I did see. There are dream dictionaries available from the Idea Exchange libraries, you can find them here.

The second search result of my online inquiry was for a video art piece, with the title of Hatsu-Yume, made by artist Bill Viola. The artist filmed this video as they explored different areas and environments during their travels in Japan. This work is described as using many metaphors, particularly considering light and dark as a comparison to life and death, or dreaming and awake. I found a short excerpt of the work here.

Images, their history and how they come to be, are very interesting to me. There are definitely similarities in finding meaning within dreams and finding meaning within art. Although I’ve tried to understand my Hatsuyume dream and the results of the search that followed, I’m certain that there is no single or best way to interpret it. There are so many possibilities as you welcome a New Year.