Thursday, 9 August 2012

Susan Hiller - From The Freud Museum

Susan Hiller - From The Freud Museum
1991 - 1996
From The Freud Museum is a vitrine containing 50 boxes each housing an artifact and accompanying image or text, collected by British artist Susan Hiller. The first version of the piece was produced in 1994 and exhibited at The Freud Museum in London, a later version completed in 1996 is now part of the Tate collection.

Evocative of a taxanomic display in an anthropological musuem the piece indicates an underlying logic to the display of the items which on close inspection is not to be found. Items are paired and placed intuitively, possible links between objects and texts, photographs, diagrams and notes are oblique; the viewer fills in gaps, finds similarities and diffrences and reflects upon possible reasons for their being together. The free association at play reminds us of the use of that tool with word games used to probe and pry into a patient's subconcious on a psycho-analyst's couch. 

Hiller said of the piece: "Sigmund Freud’s impressive collection of classical art and artefacts inspired me to formalise and focus my project. But if Freud’s collection is a kind of index to the version of Western civilisation’s heritage he was claiming, then my collection taken as a whole, is an archive of misunderstandings, crises, and ambivalences that complicate any such notion of heritage."