Sleepwalking Artist to Auction his Dreams for Charity

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Lee Hadwin: The Sleepwalking Artist
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Lee Hadwin: The Sleepwalking Artist

Sleepwalking is relatively common; it affects about 15% of children and 2% of adults. The majority of whom may sit up and speak, go for a walk – maybe open a few cupboards - but ultimately leave little evidence that they ever left their bed.
 
But, for Lee Hadwin, what he does in his sleep is incredibly uncommon and the evidence he wakes up to has become the foundation for a whole new career – because far from finding an open cupboard, most mornings Lee discovers a masterpiece he has created whilst in the land of dreams.       

Lee first started drawing in his sleep when he was four years old, he says, “It wasn’t so much drawing at that age more like scribbles, I would scribble on my bedroom walls and under the stairs at my parents’ home. It was not until my early teens that what I was producing became more detailed” He explains that since then it has continued to happen at least 2-3 times a week each with varying styles and subjects, but he can also go several months without it happening at all. 
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What is particularly fascinating about Lee is that he can’t draw when he is awake, he has even tried to recreate pieces he has drawn in his sleep “I have tried many, many times to recreate pieces I have done in my sleep, unfortunately I cannot come close to what I produce asleep whilst awake.”
 
Even the sleep experts are baffled by him “I have been to the Edinburgh Sleep Clinic a couple of times and have been monitored by scientists from Japan. The only explanation is parasomnia at this stage.” A term that simply refers to all the abnormal things that can happen to people while they sleep.  
Video footage captures Lee drawing in his sleep
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Video footage captures Lee drawing in his sleep

However, despite this lack of understanding around why it happens, he has become known as ‘The Sleepwalking Artist’ and made a career from his sleep drawings, which can sell for thousands. As well as several exhibitions around the world, including one in Hong Kong last year, he has sold his work to the likes of US tycoon Donald Trump.
 
But, he doesn’t only make a living whilst he sleeps, Lee also uses his unusual talent to raise money for charity.  
 
Currently he is planning a slightly unusual auction on eBay to raise money for Caudwell Children. The charity provides therapy, treatment and specialist equipment to disabled children and the lucky winner won’t only contribute to this but will also receive a diary of his dreams “I think it is going to be a mixture of entries; my dreams maybe drawings if I do any, and some insight into my day-to-day life”
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This won’t be the first time Lee has used eBay to auction off his work for charity – a few years ago he held an auction to raise money for Missing People. Lee says, “I would love to raise a 5 – 6 figure sum for the charity. I have supported Missing People for many years now and continue to. However after John Caudwell’s approach and due to my brother and his wife having a disabled child themselves, I thought I would try and help in a small way.”   
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The auction was originally due to launch at the end of September with Hadwin’s dreams being recorded throughout November. However, Lee explains this has been postponed, “I decided to postpone this due to other commitments and travel. I also felt that with such an important cause it deserved more publicity from the world’s media and art world. I am now going to be looking at starting the diary in January 2016 and a launch date in February 2016 on eBay.”

The winner won’t only become the proud owner of a unique piece of work, but they will also have full copyright to the dreams if they are ever released as a book or film. Considering Lee has been signed by leading art dealer Kevin Zuchowski-Morrison who also owns Rise gallery in Croydon London and has some “strange and unusual exhibitions” organised for next year, we can only imagine he has big plans for the contents of the diary. 
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