From Rhizome Artbase
Jason Nelson

Dreamaphageis a virus. Once caught the infected have a repeating dream, and as the virus progresses the dream frequency increases until the sick go insane, lapse into a coma, or starve. This project represents a psychiatrists attempt to cure the virus by comparing the dreams themselves. The dreams are represented by online books, which not only act as a portal to the text of the dreams, but also link to other realsm of science, biology and the surreal. And while the project is seemingly simple in its design, each of the books links to a wider and strange dream world. Certainly an odd mix of biology, superstition and fiction, all bundled in an interactive mix.
There does not seem to be a clear method of transmission. Some seem to immediately gather the virus’s drifting eyes after even the briefest contact with an infected patient. And in divergent cases, the spouses or children of patients, after extensive exposure, the exchange of saliva or even contact with blood or semen, do not appear to have any symptoms of the virus. Without understanding the infection vehicles or the biological conditions within in which infection occurs, we are cannot begin to stop the viruses spread. Of course isolating cases could be effective. But with such mild symptoms in the initial stages, there is no clear way of detecting the viruses presence.
How do we convince the public to remember their dreams? Currently the only measurable symptoms are the increasing occurrence of a singular dream. In the first stages of the virus, the dream will repeat itself once or twice a week. Then as the virus occupies more of the bodies neuropathway, the dream will repeat nightly. While this might not seem problematic for most patients, and in fact be quite a novelty, once this stage is reached the virus is eventually fatal. The timeline of death can vary widely, but typically takes from three to four months from the patient’s first infection.
Stages of the virus:

Week One: First instance of the dream. Usually followed by one or two more occurrences a few days later.
Week Two: Some patients recognize similarities between dreams, but very few classify the dreams as copies. Dreams will occur with greater frequency. By the end of this stage usually nightly.
Week Three: Some patients begin to experience sleep loss or agitation. However those symptoms are still too mild for most to seek medical assistance. The dreams occur nightly, but because few people remember their dreams, any connections between dreams are largely ignored.
Week Four: Tiredness, agitation, moodiness are usually serious enough for the patients to seek some remedy. Also the dreams begin to occur many times a night. Might patients begin to identify the resemblances and voice their concerns to others.
Week Five-Seven: By the end of this period the dreams have drifted into waking times. Due to these waking dreams there is serious impairment to the operation of motor vehicles or other potentially dangerous activity. Much like a seizure, these waking dreams will cause the patient to lose consciousness for a few minutes. During this stage some patients die from injuries as a result of car crashes, falling, gun accidents or other mishaps. Most patients consult psychological help as it becomes obvious that they are having the duplicating dreams.
Week Eight-Nine: By this stage patients in almost all cases have been severely affected. Most are now having the dream every hour which keeps them from any normal activity

Jason Nelson
28 September 2004
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28 September 2004
Jason Nelson