In Dreaming Desire, Bamadhaj continues her investigation of the human body in art making and its capacity to reveal facets of identity such as gender and sexuality. As a conceptual device, the cloud motif is introduced in this series as a symbolic indicator of the anxieties and subconscious grappling with issues of sexuality and sensuality that the body is constantly subjected to in this day and age. It poignantly reminds us of how these issues are relentlessly debated in public life and the domestic sphere. The body is bombarded and it yearns for detachment. Hence, the bodies naturally slips into a dream, in a transitional state, reminiscing the past and anticipating the future all at once.
From a historical perspective, the cloud motif is said to have arrived in part of Asia from China in the 16th century as a predominant motif on ceramics and textiles. In Asian cultures the clouds symbolizes water, fortune and the transitional worlds of heaven and earth. Within the context of this series the cloud motif places the body or figure in a transitional state between worlds, of being enveloped in an emotional state of dreaming.
Nadiah Bamadhaj – Dreaming Desire