_virtuality of physical space_sleepover_001

in the pursuit of a collective dream, physical space is treated as one of the planes/variables that can affect falling asleep, the quality of sleep, the dream, the possibility and quality of achieving a collective projection. investigating it separately from other variables (fig. 1) aims to analyze how a group of dreamers unites for the process of creating space, how space is claimed and transformed, what qualities of space are perceived as favorable to sleep, and especially to collective sleep, and which are worth (or necessary) of changing with the help of available means.

Pav. 1

on September 3d, a team of 7 dreamers gathered in the performance hall (lithuanian: Aktų salė) of the SODAS 2123 complex, who, using the tools found in the building’s territory, textile and furniture, created a common sleeping “nest”, deciding its spatial and atmospheric qualities on their own. 


_the dreamers started domesticating the place by tidying it up: cleaning the floor, laying out materials.

_fabrics, threads, folding chairs found in the building area, bits of plastic pipes, stones, bricks, dismantled armchairs from the Lithuanian National Drama Theater were used to create the “nest”.

_first attempts envisaged placing the dreamers in a cross-shaped constellation; heads pointing to the center of the formation. for privacy, a tent-like barrier of fabric and folding chairs found in the performance hall was erected around each of the dreamers (photo 1).

Nuotr. 1

_the number of dreamers has increased; when the rest of the participants joined, there was a need to expand the “nest”.

_it was decided to use the seat and backrests of the armchairs as the main layer, instead of mattresses, in order to ensure a comfortable and warm sleeping experience. 

_without agreement, each of the dreamers began to build a separate part of the “nest”. later, during the discussion, it was noticed that the form of “fortresses” built in childhood games was intuitively chosen: vertical objects and fabrics stretched on/between them, ensuring intimacy, privacy, a sense of primal home security in the unfamiliar and alien space of a semi-abandoned building (photo 2, 3).

_when the constellation of fortresses and nests was completed, a workshop on care and bonding was held by Laura Fernández Antolín, featuring their hand-made „theyfriend“ pillows. Laura composed an unique essential oil mixture which was diffused in the sleepover space during the whole night and guided dreamers to sleep by a series of meditation-like practices, readings and a drawing session (photo 4). 

_dreamers fell asleep to the smell of essential oils and sound of moon-themed readings. 


_dreamers wake up. no alarms are used.

_dreamers clean up the space, nests and fortresses are disassembled.

_breakfast is consumed.

_dreamers gather outside, the dreams told in the morning sun are transferred to one of the fabrics previously used in the nest (photo 5) (fig. 2).


1_all participants remembered their dreams and could tell them;

2_the concepts of security and collectivity were repeated in the dreams;

3_dreamers mentioned that they possibly dreamed of a sleepover space in one of the dream episodes; in two dreams this space became the main location of the dream action.

_transcription of dreams:


+at night I kept waking up and falling asleep. I dreamed that I woke up alone, everyone had left – I was worried and afraid that I was left here, in the space of our shared dream, disconnected from the experiment.


+ atrium illuminated by the morning sun, fog, modern space, colonnade. I’m here, inside. in front of me I see the body of a dead shark, cut and gutted. it is the work of my hands.


+I’m lying on… him. he moves. his body is gray, warm, somewhat rough. as if made of felt-like fabric. I gently run my fingers through numerous soft, silky scales, wings and other textile-organic elements that have bounced off the skin. I press my back against his warm, gently undulating body. this alien half alive, half dead mass amalgamated me and the other dreamers into a common organism. we sacrificed our minds to him, let him into the intimate corridors of the folds of our cerebral cortexes. out of the corner of my eye I see them clinging to the tentacles of the octopus, undulating with them, eyes half open, wandering between physicality and dream.


+ a summer day, the sun is high up. I found myslef in my grandmother’s village, in her house, hiding – I am being chased by the soldiers. I see through the windows how they, dressed in green uniforms, walk through the territory, but never go into the buildings, barns, sheds. I was in my grandmother’s room, hiding behind a free-standing closet; a closet that used to be the most fun playground for running around when I was a kid. I‘ve got a gut feeling that everything inside (room_home) is safe, and everything outside is hazardous. anxiety turned into a state of calmness, although not so far away, in the immediate environment there was a source of danger, lurking and awaiting.


I dreamed that I was with relatives and friends, forming a commune. we cooked together and then ate together. the space kept changing, intertwining, fluidly flowing from one space into another.


+I dreamed that I live in a luxurious apartment that I rent because I have no other choice. since the apartment is big and luxurious, I have to share it with other people. I share it with Rupert’s alternative education program‘s residency. their lectures are held in the living room, and I try to do everything quietly, without causing any noise in the kitchen, avoiding to disturb anyone.


+around 5 in the morning one of the participants had to leave the experiment. his dream is undocumented.

note: dream testimonies are the author’s loose interpretation of dreamers‘ retold night visions.