Isabel wished to create a gift for her mother in the spirit of a warm reunion as typically their relationship feels always on edge. Isabel describes a relationship made prickly because Isabel put her academic career ahead of  producing grandchildren. Here is Isabel’s interpretation of how her mother Maria’s Healing Dreamscape is altering the way mother sees daughter and vice versa:

“I am not so cozy cozy and so on with my mother because she is a little bit unpredictable. Is she going to become too inquisitive, or nasty?  It seems to me that I am a different human being from her. Not an extension of her, as parents would like to think. As beautiful as she is, I’m a separate individual. It’s a bit troublesome, actually. Either it was like this always, or we grew a little bit into it.

My parents were always wanting us to be ultra performers. They are always trying to measure me against something. I get a little bit uneasy [if they ask about my work]. Maybe it will exhaust me. I don’t want to be anymore exhausted.  I want to empty my mind so I will say, I wrote an important paper/book/talk; or this person is very important and they mentioned my work.

Things are complicated because I am here and they are in Portugal, therefore laws of gravitation might be a bit distorted in any event… Maybe because my parents grew up in the Second World War, my mother compulsively freezes fresh bread. I still remember very well the smell of fresh bread and ham, but not being allowed to taste it. Relaxation does not exist in that home. Always do something, or let’s be anxious about something. Ha-ha. Visual query languages, my field, is a form of control too.

I keep thinking of your composition: my mother and I and her 3-D pin. There is so much symbolism. She is so beautiful; I can’t stop looking at her. She’s so proud of me, putting me forward, like she is saying “This is my daughter.” I don’t see this often. It is like one plus one is not two anymore.

I don’t think my parents can laugh at themselves. But here is the interesting thing; I see now, in spite of all this, they have a real sense of humor.”