Posts Tagged 'Freud Museum'

Women and the Mind Doctors: Upcoming exhibitions

Two exciting exhibitions open early next month, one of which features a number of items from the Bethlem Collection. The Freud Museum’s Mad, Bad and Sad: Women and the Mind Doctors, runs from 10 October until 2 February 2014. A mix of historical objects and contemporary art  highlights the experience of women and their relationships to those who confined, cared for and listened to them.  The exhibition also shows how women today conduct their own explorations of mind and imagination in challenging works of art. Items from Bethlem include ECT machines, strong clothing and restraints and Richard Dadd’s A Sketch for an Idea of Crazy Jane. Bethlem Gallery artist Jane Fradgley will also have several artworks on display, from her recent show at the Institute of Psychiatry.

Meanwhile, a major retrospective exhibition devoted to another creative woman opens this weekend: Madge Gill: Medium & Visionary runs from 5 October 2013 until 26 January 2014 at Orleans House Gallery, Twickenham. With no training and no aspirations to fame, Madge Gill produced thousands of ink drawings during her lifetime. Her work remains an enigma: is it true she was inspired by an ethereal spirit guide? Was she genuinely in touch with ‘the beyond’, or was art-making a form of self therapy?

Featuring over 100 original artworks – including the ten metre calico The Crucifixion of the Soul, which has not been on display in the UK since 1979, and contextual photographs and documents, this exhibition is the first of its kind. Madge Gill was championed and collected by Jean Dubuffet, who coined the term ‘art brut’ (raw art), the precursor to the term ‘Outsider Art’. Those interested in Outsider Art might also want to visit an exhibition at St Pancras Hospital, which is on until 28 November. Epiphanies! Secrets of Outsider Art showcases up to twenty artists, from London, Australia and the USA.

Richard Dadd - Sketch for an Idea of Crazy Jane

Richard Dadd – Sketch for an Idea of Crazy Jane


History of Psychiatry Talks Online

Lectures and conferences are all very well, but space, time and financial restraints often prevent us from getting to as many as we’d like. Step in the podcast, then, making a number of recent events available to everyone with an internet connection!

First up is English Heritage’s Disability History: Voices and Sources event, associated with their new web resource which we blogged about at the end of last year. Footage of the conference has been edited into three short films, to raise awareness of the existence and importance of disability history. The first film, Disabled People Make History, explores both the contemporary projects through which disabled people are exploring their own heritage, as well as how disabled people in the past have helped to shape and change our social history. Engaging with the Historic Environment looks at the way disabled people have shaped and influenced buildings, just as buildings have impacted on them, from medical institutions to factories, from streets to palaces. Finally, the films look at the types of Archives and Sources that are available to explore disability history (look out for us in this last one!). You can watch all three films here:

Meanwhile, a symposium on the history of occupational therapy in June, held at Oxford Brookes University, has also been made available online. The event – Therapy and Empowerment – Coercion and Punishment: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives on Labour and Occupational Therapy – invited perspectives from historians and occupational therapists, leading to some exciting discussions over the value and future of occupational therapy. Of particular interest was Jennifer Laws’ talk combining historical case studies from the York Retreat with her observations on the value of informal, as well as formal, relationships and skills within a modern OT department. Monika Ankele, meanwhile, offered some comments on patients’ views of nineteenth-century labour therapy, and the ways in which this conflicted with, as well as complemented, medical opinions. All the talks, historical and contemporary, are available on the Pulse Projects website. The site is regularly updated with new recordings, and many more can be found on the ‘Conferences‘ page.

Museum events are also increasingly finding their way online. At the forefront of this in the field of psychology is the Freud Museum, who have been putting their sold out lectures on itunes for over a year. You’ll need to have itunes to download the podcasts, but with talks like Hysteria, heredity and anti-Semitism on offer, it’s certainly worth the while. For a full list, see the Freud Museum’s itunes site, linked from the Museum’s Events Page (where you can access recent talks direct).