02 PM | 27 Mar

Brion Gysin’s #Dreamachine [#geekgirl]


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Ten years in the making, BRION GYSIN’S DREAMACHINE is being released by Soleilmoon Recordings, in cooperation with The Hafler Trio and Simply Superior.

Who was Brion Gysin, and what is a Dreamachine? Gysin was a British-born Canadian painter and illustrator, best known for discovering “cut-up” writing, the technique made famous by William S. Burroughs. With the assistance of Ian Sommerville, Gysin invented the Dreamachine, which at its essence is a rotating cylinder with a light hanging inside it. The user sits or stands in front of it, very near, with eyes closed. As it rotates, slots cut in the side allow flashes of light to hit the user’s eyelids 8 or 13 times per second, matching the rate of Alpha waves produced by the brain during meditation or the early stages of sleep. The inspiration for the Dreamachine came to Gysin when he was traveling by bus along a road lined with tall trees. Writing in his journal in 1958, he described his epiphany: “I closed my eyes against the setting sun. An overwhelming flood of intensely bright patterns in supernatural colors exploded behind my eyelids: a multi-dimensional kaleidoscope whirling out through space.” It was a transformational moment in Gysin’s life, and the first Dreamachine was created in 1961, after more than two years of experimentation and tinkering.

The package released by Soleilmoon includes a fully functional Dreamachine, designed to Brion Gysin’s specifications, printed and die-cut on sturdy, flexible and long-lasting vinyl. It’s ready for use, right out of the box. Simply connect the overlapping velcro-lined edges, center the cylinder on an LP, lock it in place with a few pieces of sticky tape and then place it on a turntable, preferably one that can rotate at 78 RPM, although 45 RPM will work, too. Hang a lightbulb inside, then seat yourself near the rotating cyclinder, close your eyes and wait for the dreamstate to be induced.

Source: Dangerous Minds