Art from Dreams: My Jungian Journey in Collage, Assemblage, and Poetry

Dreams appear mysterious. The images and symbols conveyed are gleaned from such diverse sources as present situations, childhood, religion, history, etc.: All attempting to communicate information from our unconscious mind to our conscious mind. Both minds perceive and assimilate our circumstances, but the unconscious mind speaks only in images and symbols.

Susan Levin, "Cages of Our Lives"
Susan Levin, “Cages of Our Lives”

To understand its seemingly obscure messages, we must associate and amplify their meaning to us personally. We ask ourselves “Why is this setting, person, number, animal, color, etc., in our dream? What are they trying to tell us? Why did I awaken from the dream with a particular mood or feeling?”

Susan Levin, "Ship of Souls"
Susan Levin, “Ship of Souls”

Art-making and poetry are helpful in contemplating what the unconscious mind has seen and may help in deciphering a dream.

The first series of artworks in this book were constructed during the time I was working with a professional Jungian dream analyst. These mixed-media found object collage/assemblages are grouped in a series because they resulted from a linear out-pouring of themes that arose during that time. Sometime later I was inspired to write a poem for each piece. The poems express my further integration of each theme and do not necessarily incorporate the images and symbols in the artworks.

– Introduction to Susan Levin’s book, Art from Dreams.