Miroir des Songes/Mirror of Dreams

An Interactive Installation

Music: Kaija Saariaho & Jean-Baptiste Barrière

General Conception: Jean-Baptiste Barrière

Image Realization: Pierre-Jean Bouyer

Video & regie: Isabelle Barrière

Premiered at Institut Finlandais Paris,

and at Kiasma - Helsinki Contemporary Art Museum, May 2004



Reality Checks, a collection of interactive installations


Reality Checks is a collection of interactive installations about communication in the digital age, and the increasingly interdependant status of reality and virtuality.

These pieces are intimate experiences, living parabolas on the changing relations between objects, between them and us, as well as between us, questionning our present and future, in a world where frontiers tend to vanish, leaving us with always more questions about our identities.

The Mirror of Dreams / Unipeili is staging these interrogations through an interactive installation which makes people to communicate about their dreams, in two physical spaces, the Finnish Institute in Paris and Kiasma the Contemporary Art Museum in Helsinki, as well as on the  Internet and with mobile phones (with MMS).


The Mirror of Dreams / Unipeili

A visual and musical interactive installation

Presented simutaneously live at

Institut Finlandais, in Paris &

Kiasma Contemporary Art Museum, in Helsinki


The visitor who enters the room, at the Institut Finlandais in Paris, as well as in Kiasma, finds himself confronted to his own reflection, projected on a mirror/screen at the center of the space.

This image ressembles him, but seems both near and far, alike and different. It lives and transforms itself, according to his movements in space. By moving in different ways in front and around the mirror, the visitor defines the nature of his self-portrait, all the times changing, and explores the troubling relation between identity and alterity.

Some moments are memorized and may reappear at a later stage. Also, preceeding visitors may appear in the mirror telling their dreams. Indeed, visitors’ images and voices are transformed and integrated in a visual and sonic bank, becoming part of a collective memory, that may be sampled and incorporated in the following self-portraits.

During the exploration, worlds at first hidden, reveals themselves to the visitor. Imaginary sceneries (landscapes, etc.), contribute to the elaboration of this self-portrait in mutation. These images and musics explore the thematic of dream, notably in the musical works of Kaija Saariaho refering to it (e.g. the piece From The Grammar of Dreams).

The visitor eventually realizes that, from time to time, on the other side of the mirror, (Helsinki when in Paris, Paris when in Helsinki), there is someone, who lives the same experience. They can then communicate and exchange thoughts about their mutual sensations of this strange experience.

When going out, the visitors are proposed to record their own dreams, which are then incorporated to the memory of the mirror.

They are also invited to send their dreams to an e-mail address, with computers as well as mobile phones ; and/or in the same way to consult at any time the current state of the mirror.

Moreover, images and sounds which are being memorized in the Mirror of Dreams, can be found in the double of the installation on an Internet site : the three memories, from Paris, Helsinki and Internet, do communicate. The dreams of the others are haunting us.



The Mirror of Dreams / Unipeili: the website

    An interactive visual and musical installation

on the Internet and on mobile phones


This is an Internet version of The Mirror of Dreams / Unipeili, communicating with the installation in the exhibition in Paris and Helsinki.

Everyone can participate at distance to this version, by sending to a specific Internet address, a photo, or a visual/sonic message telling a dream, either from a computer or a mobile phone (as MMS). These elements are then processed and presented on the site.

Images and sounds arriving at any moment on the website, will enrich the colllective memory, and be incorporated in the following self-portraits, in the exhibition and on the net.