Sigmund Freud Museum 2020 comprises of measures as follows:
Renovation of Berggasse 19
The aim is to restore the façade from the Gründerzeit period and to safeguard the building fabric. A newly designed interior courtyard and the café on the ground floor invite visitors to stay a while. New cloakrooms and sanitary facilities will cater for current footfall.
New cloakrooms and sanitary facilities on the ground floor ensure basic international museum standards and create adequate conditions for the more than 100,000 visitors every year. The exhibition area on the mezzanine is to be enlarged from 280 to 400 square metres.
Barrier free access to the Museum and Library
Reorganisation and extension of the Museum to cover a surface of 400 m2
Sigmund Freud, the world’s most famous intellectual of the 20th century and figurehead of the Wiener Moderne, is at the centre of the new, variable and multi-faceted Museum concept focusing on the foundation of psychoanalysis and the history of its lasting effect.
Museum as a place of experience: Respecting the character of Sigmund Freud’s workplace and home from the Gründerzeit period, the aim is also to make the family’s private rooms open to the public for the first time. These rooms give an insight into the family’s eventful history and allow visitors to learn more about the day-to-day life of a Viennese family at the turn of the century. In Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic office the original furnishings of the waiting room give visitors a sense of the atmosphere of a 19th-century interior that is so characteristic of Vienna, encouraging them to explore the social context of Freud’s work. The museum presentation in the office’s study focuses on the formation of psychoanalytic theory, providing information about the extensive activities of the “father of psychoanalysis” as a cultural theorist. The show also tells of his diverse correspondence with colleagues, friends and patients, comprising a total of almost 20,000 letters. In Freud’s treatment room we deal with core aspects of psychoanalytic practice, with the emphasis on day-to-day therapy and psychoanalytic treatment methods. The empty space created by the absence of the couch in this room plays a special role in the new permanent exhibition. The absence of this piece of furniture, that has meanwhile become an icon of psychoanalysis, characterises the Museum as a vestigial memory space and is a symbol of the losses written in our history: Freud’s flight from the Nazis stands pars pro toto for millions of refugees and murdered people.
The office on the upper ground floor of Berggasse 19 that Freud had furnished in the mid-1890s will serve as a display room for the Contemporary Art Collection that counts among the most renowned collections of conceptual art in Austria, featuring works of Paolo Calzolari, Joseph Kosuth, Franz West, Heimo Zobernig, Sherri Levine, Georg Herold and many others.
The new concept allows visitors to explore the one-time importance and function of these rooms. With the aid of modern educational instruments the show deals with the many different aspects of this cultural site – from presenting the history of the development of psychoanalysis to the danger of its eradication in the Nazi era and a discussion of its current importance – in a form commensurate with the subject matter, subjecting them to critical scrutiny and presenting them to a wide public (from school-goers and Vienna tourists to experts).
Contact: Sigmund Freud Foundation, Berggasse 19, A-1090 Vienna, firstname.lastname@example.org, T: +43 1 319 15 96-23