When Sigmund Freud published The Interpretation of Dreams in 1900, he began the modern study of a phenomenon that has fascinated human beings for thousands of years. At the same time he opened a new realm, the unconscious mind, to filmmakers and artists who were inspired by his theories. This beautifully designed and lavishly illustrated book—written to commemorate the centenary of Freud's classic work—examines the shifting roles that dreams have played in twentieth-century art and science.
Over the course of the twentieth century, as scientists have researched the psychology and physiology of dreams, artists from Odilon Redon and Joan Miró to Jenny Holzer, Ingmar Bergman, and Laurie Anderson have produced dramatic images centered in the unconscious. An exploration of this artistic output, this volume features a hundred color and fifty black-and-white illustrations depicting work by a broad range of artists in painting, photography, sculpture, video, film, performance, dance, and other media.
In her opening essay, Lynn Gamwell reviews the psychoanalytic understanding of dreams and explores the ways in which Freud's theories have been interpreted artistically. The next essay, by Ernest Hartmann, traces attempts to link somatic and psychological dimensions of dreaming and to discover parallels between these dimensions and creative thought. In the final essay, Donald Kuspit assesses the impact of the transition from the mystical outlook that human beings held in the nineteenth century to the twentieth-century scientific paradigm for the human mind.
A century of dreamwork is captured in this stunning volume, which concludes with a "dream archive"—an illustrated catalogue raisonné of approximately five hundred examples of twentieth-century art about dreams.
"A handsome catalogue... contains a more comprehensive view of the unconscious... Gamwell briefly opens an intriguing door for us."
Fred Bendheim, Lancet. January, 2000.
"This large-format, richly illustrated book commemorates the 100th anniversary of the publication of Sigmund Freud's Interpretation of Dreams.... General readers; undergraduate and graduate students; professionals."
Choice, Sept. 2000, Vol. 38, No. 1.
"Although it is an exhibition catalog... it stands alone as solid cultural history and fascinating reading... Well produced, informative, and accessable, this book will appeal to readers involved with psychology, any of the arts, or Western history in general."
"Lynn Gamwell has collected an extraordinary selection of portraits, pictures, and essays related to dreams, compiled into an exquisite book. It would be a pleasurable addition to your dream library and adornment to your coffee table... The incredible creative power of the dream excites the reader of this fine volume... Well worth purchasing and perusing."
Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences