An original signed sketch by Sir Sidney Nolan, one of Australia’s best known painters, recently sold on eBay for $113.61. It would probably have sold for thousands if it hadn’t been pan fried. Yes, you did read that correctly. Pan fried.
The idea to cook the sketch – a portrait of the dreamer’s grandfather – came in a dream.
“In the dream I had an exhibition of drawings which had all been crumbed and deep-fried. I’d never seen anything like that before,” explained artist Andy Wear.
Wear was inspired to follow his dream literally, exploring the question of valuing a work based on the artist’s signature rather than on the quality of the art. “I find it intriguing that just because a great artist does it, it’s treasured,” he said.
Many brilliant inventions, ideas, and creative solutions, have been triggered by dreams. While following a dream literally may be rewarding, it may also be disastrous or misguided.
Following a dream literally also blinds you to the more meaningful personal insight you can gain by understanding your dream at a symbolic level.
I don’t have any more details of Wear’s dream, but the notion of an exhibition of crumbed and deep-fried drawings reminds me of the hunger for fast fix dream interpretation that people new to the subject often expect.
I encounter it frequently in the form of well-intentioned questions on Twitter, when people new to exploring their dreams manage to get their dream and their request to tell them what it means down to the 140 characters that Twitter requires, clearly expecting me to be able to deliver a fast fix in up to 140 characters back.
I understand this. Dream novices think you can look up the meaning of a dream in a dream dictionary, and expect a dream expert – like me – to be that instant dream dictionary.
I love that people are interested in their dreams and what they mean, and I’d love to deliver fast fixes, but that’s not how you get meaningful, useful insight, the kind you can take action on to create meaningful, long-lasting, deeply rewarding change in your life.
We live in a fast world, and all hail to speed and efficiency when it gets us results and frees time and energy for us to enjoy. Interpreting dreams takes time, and the only way a dreamer can speed it up is to get a professional interpretation. Absorbing that interpretation, pondering and understanding the new insight it delivers, doing the dream alchemy to reprogram limiting beliefs, and taking appropriate action: these take time.
I’m not going to do the metaphor about the time it takes to grow, harvest, shop, prepare, and cook good food as opposed to popping into McDonalds for a fast fix.
Oops, I think I just have.
Next time you find yourself taking a dream literally, stop. Have a deeper look.
Related articles you might enjoy