Georgina Starr, a ‘young British artist’, works with hypnosis and telepathy in theatrical video works based in pop culture, such as her 1994-95 Visit to a Small Planet, and Hypnodreamdruff, 1996. A low fi virtual reality telepathy headset described as an ‘extraterrestrial helmet of telepathy’ is worn by Starr in her performance Visit to a Small Planet, 1994-95. Her work with telepathy in The Hungry Brain aspect of her larger body of work called Hypnodreamdruff exaggerates the presence of telepathy in popular self help books, entertainment and as a popular bar topic. The Hungry Brain narrative is constructed within a strange nightclub, with a retro 60s feel including spiral table clothes and “products referring to magic, hypnosis and the supernatural.”1 Conversations are dreamlike, and characters recount dreams in a dream like atmosphere. It is full of doubled or twinned characters that exist in both dream stories and in the club. Some characters practice dream analysis and psychoanalysis, others read books on the same material. A woman’s thoughts are heard as she reads ‘A Practical Guide to Self Hypnosis’ which includes descriptions of ‘hypnospiral’ assisted hypnosis. “As the woman reads the book we see a man at another table staring at the spiral table cloth, his eyes moving in a circular motion.” See: Starr. The character Pete asks “Have yer seen that bloke on telly who makes people do what he tells ‘em through his mind…..telep……thesie it’s called. Fuckin’ barmy!”2Pete and friend continue to speculate on the powers of hypnosis demonstrated by the TV stage hypnotist.As the camera pans away from them we see close ups of various posters advertising general aids to psychic development. Hypnodreamdruff elaborately interconnects narratives manifest in video or installation, including Starr’s caravan piece Magic and her nightclub piece The Hungry Brain. Starr says: “The idea of prediction or magical transformation has always been at the centre of my work. I first touched on it in early works like Visit to a Small Planet and Getting to Know You where I attempted to get to know a stranger by experimenting with various psychic phenomenon like palm reading, dream analysis and numerology, and in more recent works like THEDA and I am the Medium.”3



  1. Georgina Starr, The Hungry Brain, 15 June 2002
  2. Georgina Starr, The Hungry Brain, 15 June 2002