In the Land of Imagination

In the Land of Imagination

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    Photo copyright © Museum im Lagerhaus, St. Gallen

    The presentation of C.G. Jung’s (1875–1961) Red Book caused a sensation at the 2013 Venice Biennale. In it the famous Swiss psychiatrist and founder of analytical psychology recorded his dreams and visions in pictures and text. Five years later, the C.G. Jung Collection is now being presented to the public for the first time. It includes some 4500 artworks by his patients from between 1917 and 1955.

    Jung asked his patients to paint and draw pictures from their imagination, just as he did himself. Series of images emerged in the “active imagination” as part of the therapeutic process. The C.G. Jung collection is unique and unlike any other psychiatrist’s collection of its time. It differs from historical art collections of psychiatric institutions both in the conditions in which the artworks were created and in the impetus for the art. Jung’s patients came to him as private patients in his practice in Küsnacht on Lake Zurich, which he opened in 1909. They ventured along with him into the land of imagination and translated it into pictures.

    On the occasion of the seventieth anniversary of the C.G. Jung Institute, which coincides with the thirtieth anniversary of the Museum im Lagerhaus in 2018, the picture archive has been opened and the collection is being made accessible to the public and specialists for the first time in a comprehensive show with 164 works at the Museum im Lagerhaus. Like the Red Book, it will amaze viewers once again and is likely to draw a similar degree of attention.

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