“People often find themselves haunted by obsessive thoughts and in the dream state these desires and intentions are expressed without the involvement of the self." [Mullane]

My hopes, desires, fears and stressful experiences usually turn into dreams so intense and vivid that they get mixed with memories.

The separation of the fantasy from reality, becomes tricky, creating a realm that my family and friends baptised: the Bellaverse.

Ideas and fears might lead to dreams and to ‘what if...’ fantasies. Taking a deeper look into my recurring dreams, I started the analysis by trying to decipher the symbolism within. Since I’m going through a stressful situation that aroused self-doubt and self-consciousness, I began to think of how much is due to keeping up with expectations, especially those imposed as a social norm, living with the consistent pressure to comply and to conform. Expectations which, when unfulfilled, create a state of frustration, resulting in pessimistic feelings, self- torment, a negative self-image and even panic attacks. Fear, that primary emotion, ensures self-preservation and survival by provoking a suitable behavioural reaction to perceived threats; however, it can be learned and socially conditioned. The constant struggle to achieve unattainable ideals or unrealistic goals, for fear of criticism, of not being good enough, sets such impossible standards that it drives us to purchase what we do not need, to modify our bodies, to lose ourselves and, in essence, to become someone else, something else, a synthetic thing - a plastic, hollow and artificial thing - that distract us from becoming more.

In this exhibition, the idea of going into the dream realm to escape reality is presented through digital manipulated photography and videos featuring an excess of
bubble-wrap and plastics representing everything disposable and expendable that we keep bringing into our lives but are unhealthy and keep us trapped.

Here I welcome you to Bellaverse, where the ‘what ifs’ and dreams are brought into reality through poems, memes, illustrations, and movies.

"Who looks outside dreams, who looks inside awakens." Carl Jung