Mad and chilly at The Freud Museum.

A nippy wind followed my friend and I,still in high spirits after our lunch alfresco ( in December!!) and a visit to the delectable Margaret Howell shop, to The Freud Museum for their latest exhibition.

Mad, Bad and Sad: Women and the Mind Doctors is based on a book by Lisa Appignanesi which charts the treatment of women with mental health problems from 1800 to now. The exhibition includes work by Louise Bourgeois, Sarah Lucas, Helen Chadwick and Alice Anderson. Their works cannily placed amongst Freud’s possessions echoing sympathetically with the disturbing stories of so many women. The straight jackets and leather mitts, buckles and shackles, the wrapping copper wires, the rhythmic rocking and droning voices, the distorted body drawings.

As we slipped away to the bright Christmas cheer of Hampstead I was unable to shake off my chilly thoughts. It seems that there is barely a dividing line between sanity and insanity, a line so shakily drawn and redrawn over time, a line so easily crossed even in my own secret history.




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