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V&A Museum of Childhood opens a new exhibition which explores dreams
Exuma by pupil at Lauriston.

LONDON.- Dream on is a new exhibition which explores dreams, the unconscious and an imaginary world between sleep and wakefulness. Opening on 10 February 2018 at the V&A Museum of Childhood, it weaves together several elements. New work by internationally renowned ceramist Christie Brown was created in response to the Museum collection, a co-created sculptural installation by young people from St George’s Hospital Tooting and a photography project with primary school children from Lauriston School Hackney.

Looking at our relationship to objects and the power we invest in them the exhibition plays with the notion that objects come to life when we are not looking, much like our dreams when we fall asleep.

Christie Brown’s figurative ceramic installation Ludus Est references dolls and toys in the collection and her own childhood memories. In a series of dream-like tableaux we are taken on a narrative journey in which two dolls based on the 1920’s Italian Lenci dolls explore the museum after hours.

In Baby House Dreams Brown references some of the museum’s dolls’ houses to create a photographic frieze of a row of houses. Using the psychoanalytical interpretation of the house as a symbol of the self she has populated the houses with strange occupants from her own archive of sculptures. Faces peering out of windows representing characters from her subconscious world.

Mirroring Christie Brown’s practise and processes the museum has worked with young people from St George’s Hospital Tooting over 7 weeks to co-create the installation At Play, a surreal sculptural fantasy of what some of the museums liberated inhabitants might get up to when everyone has gone home. The narratives and the characters have evolved with the project.

Photographer Madeleine Waller and artist Katherine Tulloh worked with Year 5 children from Lauriston Primary School Hackney over 6 weeks. They retold, staged, dressed and photographed scenes to create images that illustrate their own dreams in Can We Photograph Our Dreams. The children have been active agents in every stage of the creative process.

Christie Brown is an artist and Emerita Professor of Ceramics at the University of Westminster in London, where she taught on the BA, MA and PhD programmes. She was Principal Investigator on the AHRC project Ceramics in the Expanded Field which was awarded to the University’s Ceramics Research Centre in 2011 to explore the relationship between contemporary ceramic art and museum collections. She graduated from Harrow School of Art in 1982 and set up her north London studio.

Her figurative work is informed by the fragmented narratives which reflect the parallel between archaeology and psychoanalysis. Recent solo exhibitions include Rara Avis at Arthouse1 in London (2016) and DreamWork, at the Freud Museum, London (2012). Other principal exhibitions include Material Earth at Messum’s Wiltshire, Concrete and Clay at Roaming Room, London, Sculptural Ceramics and Stone at Pangolin London, (all 2017) Marking the Line; Ceramics and Architecture at the Sir John Soane’s Museum (2013) and Award at the British Ceramics Biennial (2013). Her work is featured in several private and public collections in Europe and the USA, including the Victoria and Albert Museum, York Art Gallery, the Sèvres Museum, France and the Mint Museum USA.

Katherine Tulloh is a painter and film maker who lives and works in Hackney. Her work deals with layers and fragments of narrative from many sources and times, where memories penetrate the present and eras exist contiguously. She won Best Experimental film in the Swedenborg Society Film Festival 2010 for her film All Night My Dreams.

Tulloh attended Chelsea College of Art and Cambridge University. She teaches art to children from 5 to 11 at afterschool clubs and play schemes. She has run projects and workshops for children and adults within schools and at the V&A Museum of Childhood.

Exhibitions include: We Are Not Witches, Saatchi Gallery 2010; Ur, Transition Gallery 2013; The Perfect Nude, Wimbledon Space 2013; Greetings From Earth, Transition Gallery 2015.

Madeleine Waller is originally from Australia, she moved to London in 1987, and now lives in Hackney, East London.

After completing a photo-journalism course at London College of Printing Waller started her career working for newspapers and magazines on a broad range of assignments from reportage to features, she chose to concentrate mainly on portraiture. Her portrait projects include: Stockwell Bus Garage, Swimmers, Mothers and Teenage Daughters.

A selection of Madeleine Waller’s Portraits of Poets has been exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery and are included in their permanent collection. She has had two books published, East London Swimmers, published by Hoxton Mini Press, and Portraits as part of a year-long Residency at the Swedenborg Society in London.

Madeleine Waller is currently Photographer in Residence at Harrow School and she is also working on a Project in Northumberland, funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, using Photography to try and improve children’s creative writing skills.

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