Robbie LaFleur

Anna Freud’s Weaving

I attended a conference at the Freud Museum in London, “Freud Today/Freud Tomorrow,” at the Anna Freud Center, a few doors down from the lovely Freud Museum.  The museum is in the London home to which Freud escaped from Vienna in 1838, a year before his death in 1939.  Here is the most famous couch in the world. It is surrounded by books, archaeological figures (whole crowds of them), and rich, patterned textiles.

couch

A great chair.

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Anna Freud, the youngest of Sigmund Freud’s six children, was the only one to follow in his psychoanalytic footsteps.  She expanded on his teachings, and published pioneering work on child analysis. She kept her father’s study just as it was during the next 40 years she lived in the house.  She did not inherit his opulent style, however; her analytic couch seems so modest in comparison, covered in a brown knitted cover.  The pillows are woven in natural colors, modest in technique and muted in tone.

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Anna Freud was a weaver!  The museum signage noted, “As Sigmund Freud used archaeology as a metaphor for psychoanalysis and the uncovering of ‘layers,’ Anna often used weaving metaphors to describe the development of the mind.” On the other hand, her father thought her weaving covered a “genital deficiency.” Weaving calmed her and helped her to concentrate, and she sometimes composed lectures while weaving.

Did she weave the fabric on these pillows? I may reproduce the fabric on the brown-and-white one.

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My London trip is not one focused on textiles, but they always show up, don’t they?

 

3 comments on “Anna Freud’s Weaving

  1. Lynn Somerstein
    September 25, 2016

    I m a psychoanalyst, knitter and learning weaver. This is the first picture I’ve seen of Anna Freud”s hand work. Thank you so much. Hope you make the pillow.
    Take care!

  2. Becoming...
    September 25, 2016

    So interesting! Thanks for sharing these great pictures.

  3. Mary York
    September 25, 2016

    How cool!! I have a couple of tribal rugs very similar to the one in the picture.

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This entry was posted on September 25, 2016 by in Uncategorized.
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