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‘Twelve Boxes of Earth’ is a multimedia narrative collage created by avant-garde writer Daniel O’Reilly

The twelve paintings, or hypergraphs, presented in this piece act as containers for visual dialogue in both a symbolic and allegorical sense: like ‘Dracula’s’ twelve boxes, (itself a form of biological-warfare,) a hidden narrative is contained by each image which unfolds through the activity of the viewer. These images are to be considered incubation units for the surreal mythologies lurking within the boxes. Spectators can ‘open the boxes’ to access these hidden worlds by scanning the QR code attached, which lead to all manner of new areas ripe for exploration: short stories, a surreal DJ soundscape produced for a 'surrealist games workshop', handmade maps, photographic essays, and even an online labyrinth to be explored by the curious viewer eager for ludic experience.

This project has been created as a hybrid virtual-installation for the International Exhibition of Surrealism held in Cairo, Egypt in February 2022, and later at the Andre Breton House in Saint Cirque La Popie, France. At a time of global pandemic, ‘Twelve Boxes’ invokes the spectre of infection only to weave it into a larger narrative of ‘Gothic Capitalism’, of an infernal machinery, a succubus leeching off the living, and of the weapons of poetic counterpoint: of surrealist desire and its forbidden modes of production.

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twelve paintings


The Contents:

Box No.1

Story: Death of an Artist


Box No.2

Audio: Landscape with a woman playing harmonium


Box No.3

Story: The Thing


Box No.4

Game: Labyrinth


Box No.5

Game: Labyrinth


Box No.6

Photographs: A Woman Disappeared


Box No.7

Photographs: A Woman Disappeared


Box No.8

Photographs: A Woman Disappeared


Box No.9

Photographs: A Woman Disappeared


Box No.10

Photographs: A Woman Disappeared


Box No.11

Photographs: A Woman Disappeared


Box No.12

Game: Labyrinth



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