Sleeping with a Vengeance, Dreaming of a Life

‘.... for each sleep is the true practice of hope, a long training at emancipation and freedom’ - El Wardany, H. (2017) Book of Sleep. Cairo, Egypt: Al-Karma Books.

Sleeping with a Vengeance, Dreaming of a Life curated by Ruth Noack, takes a close look at contemporary politics of sleep and asks whether we can reclaim sleep and dreaming from the clutches of late capitalism. In Jonathan Crary’s book ‘24/7: Terminal Capitalism and the Ends of Sleep ‘, sleep has been turned into a resource, tied to production, consumption, warfare and biopolitics. We are simultaneously enticed to sleep less and to sleep productively. Contemporary cultural practice mimics this trend with sleep performances, sleep hotels, sleep music.

Can sleep instead be configured as a radical, subversive activity? Can the act of dreaming, sleep’s correlate, be imagined a political deed? If sleep were to obstruct the cycle of capitalist production and social reproduction, would the sleeper be able to dream up a better life, a better future?

Sleeping with a Vengeance, Dreaming of a Life brings together artists from all walks of life and artworks from diverse cultural backgrounds in order to start understanding how we might share agency in a future politics of sleep. Concurrently, the curatorial model of the exhibition series is based on a much-needed ecology of scale. Starting with next to no budget and working with the smallest of institutions, the first exhibitions are conceived as sketches to be fleshed out and gaining momentum over the next couple of years.

The series was opened with 21 artists at Yellow Brick, Athens, in July 2018. The exhibition at lítost will host 29 positions, before continuing on to the Institute for Provocation, Beijing in October 2018.


This exhibition has been kindly supported by the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Prague, GESTOR ochranný svaz autorský and the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen - IFA.

Public Programme

Talking about exhibition making

18 September 2018


exhibition as...

27 October - 9 December 2018

Public Programme

Fragile, Handle with Care

27 October 2018

Public Programme

Raincoats for a DIY Reality

28 October 2018

Public Programme

Small Forms of the Great Doubt

17 November - 18 November 2018

Public Programme

a scaffold to give it structure and a culture for it to feed from

8 December 2018


Extra-Planetary Commitment

16 March - 28 April 2019

Public Programme

Curator's Tour: Extra-Planetary Commitment

16 March 2019


hymns of dazzle machines

12 June - 21 July 2019

Public Programme

Ikarie XB1

20 July 2019


Distress Over Parliament

31 August - 13 October 2019

Public Programme

object duration: Avatar Zet #1

23 October 2019

Public Programme

object duration: Avatar Zet #2

1 December 2019

Art Fair

NADA Miami 2019: Botond Keresztesi

5 December - 8 December 2019


The Sea Monster, The Bear

25 January - 12 March 2020

Public Programme

Curator's Tour: The Sea Monster, The Bear

6 February 2020

Art Fair

NADA FAIR: Radek Brousil, Valentýna Janů, Botond Keresztesi, Pavla Malinová

20 May - 21 June 2020

Art Fair

Art Brussels Online Platform: Radek Brousil, Valentýna Janů, Botond Keresztesi, Pavla Malinová

28 May - 15 June 2020


Pavla Malinová: Hollow Hug

9 June - 25 July 2020

Public Programme

Curator's Tour: ‘Hollow Hug’

9 July 2020


Záhradníkov dom

1 August - 29 August 2020


In Midst of the Worst, the Best of Times

5 September - 17 October 2020


4 | 14 | 26 degrees east (as part of NADA Miami 2020, on view in Brussels and online)

1 December - 5 December 2020



12 December - 22 December 2020