Resident Artist: Carrie Albert No. 3


Surreal War

My “Surreal War” began with nightmares about senseless chemical bombs in my city, my school, my own apartment. The attacks couldn’t be controlled until I awoke.

One night I dreamt my comrades and I fought against the propaganda through art and writing we posted on walls throughout the city. A few weeks later, this dream became synchronistic, even prescient. Walking down a quiet neighborhood street, I noticed art glued onto a grey wall. The words War and sur • real popped out, said look at me, recognize me.

I’ve taken friends and relatives to see this, like a tourist destination. Here for you to view and ponder with me:


Surreal War Five Figure Wall Banner


Five naked bodies, vulnerable/natural,
strangely lighted and dark
float in space/time and are glued

onto a grey brick wall

separate he, she, perhaps androgynous
crucifixes whose cross is
a word with syllables broken, split

into roots by bullets:


per • cep • tion
cha • ris • ma
sur • re • al

dis • cern • ment.

like prison cells in grey mind
looking for an opening
below psychic terrors. Can you
also hear their questioning

voices speak of hope?

dis • cern • ment
per • cep • tion
might offer change.


Ghosts of the Surreal Banner


Next to them, nine old photos
from different cameras,
multiple perspectives, artifacts
of time, shot by

Aunt S, Dad, Grandpa, Cousin P. . .

portraits cut-out became gaping
white ghosts, echoes of, I am not
here. I no longer belong in front
of my house, on my lawn.
All is lost but the outline

of my dress, high heels, coat

every day all over the globe
absent, missing, abducted


Here: paper memorials with
no one left, glued onto that same grey
brick wall by the anonymous artist(s)

who also hide


SurrealWarbanner3ghosts copy


armed with pen/swords and scissors/knives
Did you once plot in your notebooks
at the cannabis cafe across the street
torn down for another condo

now underground

my dream comrades, where have

you gone?




Over time, the body-less images have been torn away, as if annihilation is their fate. The surreal war figures have gotten grungier, more weathered but have been left alone. My dreams have softened.


Copyright © 2015 by Carrie Albert






Photographs taken by Carrie Albert
Art on the wall by Unknown Seattle Artist by



One thought on “Resident Artist: Carrie Albert No. 3

  1. Anna
    February 11, 2015 at 2:26 am

    Carrie Albert, this is so poignantly evocative of pasts gone into ether, the helplessness of those who lost everything and the artists who actually managed to assay the sadness of it all.

    thank you for writing this

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