return to, the home of critical reviews

Bracha Ettinger exhibition, "Resonance/Overlay/Interweave," Freud Museum, London

From:     Mark Ridley
Category: ArtExhibitions
Date:     18 June 2009
Time:     04:00 AM


Bracha Ettinger
"Resonance/Overlay/Interweave in the Freudian Space of Memory and Migration"
2 June – 26 July, 2009
Freud Museum, London (

This exhibition of work by Bracha Ettinger, curated by Griselda Pollock, makes excellent use of the rooms in the Freud Museum 
and creates a very interesting conversation between the displayed pieces.

The Freud Museum displays objects and books collected by Freud as well as some of his personal effects. As the exhibition 
press release suggests, the museum is a space of memory, an archive, and a scene of Freud’s analytical work on human 

Bracha Ettinger’s work has been sprinkled within this space of memory. Her work utilizes old family photos as well as photos 
relating to the Holocaust and to contemporary Middle East. These photos are first photocopied and the artist paints on top of the 
grainy traces of the photocopied image, creating a layer of images or memories. Ettinger’s other work includes drawings, 
sketchbooks/notebooks as well as what she calls “scannographies,” book-based graphic works of draw-writing as described in 
the press release.

The exhibition is in three parts: “Resonance” includes paintings, drawings and Ettinger’s family photos and objects that have 
been placed in the entrance hall, the dining room and the consulting room. “Overlay” includes several paintings, drawings, 
sketchbooks/notebooks and scannographies placed in Freud’s bedroom. Finally, “Interweave” includes paintings, drawings, a 
scannography and a photograph placed in Anna Freud’s consulting room.

Ettinger’s artworks, photos and objects are interspersed between the objects already existing in the museum. For example, one 
painting is placed between Anna Freud’s diplomas and another just fits in an empty space in a bookcase. The viewer has to 
engage with the space and actively look for the artist’s pieces. The placement of the artworks brings about a very interesting 
relationship between Ettinger’s work and the existing objects in the museum. Stories of memory, suffering, displacement, 
trauma, war and loss are transferred from one object to another in an almost seamless way. Freud’s and Ettinger’s memories, 
histories and objects intertwine with one another, connecting people, places, histories and memories.

This exhibition is truly well thought out and engages in a deep and meaningful way with questions of cultural memory and 
human subjectivity.

return to, the home of critical reviews