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Freud Museum Symposium - Interpreting Collections: Idea, Object, Site

LOCATION | The Freud Museum

DATE | 26 January 2013


This one-day symposium was timed to accompany the exhibition DreamWork by artist and researcher Christie Brown. It considered the relationship between ceramic art practice and museum collections within the broader context of contemporary visual culture. The symposium addressed key areas of inspiration for artists within this context, by focussing on the dialogue between the concept, the collection and the specific nature of the site. Papers featured a subjective response to Freud’s archaic figurative collection, the uncanny notion of the inner life in inanimate objects and the private house as museum, broadening out to raise curatorial and theoretical questions around the nature of this art practice within post modern culture and ideology.


Dr Glenn Adamson Head of Research at the Victoria & Albert Museum More Than a Feeling: The Museum as Research Institution.

Christie Brown Professor of Ceramics at the University of Westminster Dreaming and Working

Andrew Renton Curator of Applied Art at the National Museum of Wales. Deposits and withdrawals at the ‘collective memory bank’: Ceramic artists and the National Museum of Wales

Esther Leslie Professor of Political Aesthetics at Birkbeck College, London Houses of the Future Perfect: Freud, Benjamin and Schwitters’ Domestic Collections

Janice West Writer and Curator Serious Toys

Calum Storrie Writer and Exhibition designer Turning Around/Going Back

Dr Julian Stair (Chair) Dr Marquard Smith (Plenary discussion chair) University of Westminster

Christie Brown, My Desk(2000-2012), ceramic and mixed media.
Photo: Philip Sayer