The Letters of Emma Hauck

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The extraordinary letters that Emma Hauck (1878-1920) wrote to her husband from the University Psychiatric Clinic in Heidelberg just over a century ago have lost none of their despair over the years. She was suffering from a severe mental disturbance and at the time of her incarceration in 1909 believed that she had been contaminated and poisoned by her husband’s kiss. Read more

Brief an den Ehemann (Letter to Husband)
Graphite on paper
16.3cm x 10.6cm
1909
Courtesy of Prinzhorn Sammlung


Komm (Come)
Graphite on paper
16.3cm x 10.6cm
1909
Courtesy of Prinzhorn Sammlung

Unseen and Unheard

Emma Hauck and her Legacy (The Quay Brothers and Laura Bruce)

Ungesehen und Unerhort Kunstler reagieren auf die Sammlung Prinzhorn. Herausgegeben von Ingrid von Beyme und
Thomas Roske 2013.

Just over one hundred years ago a young woman from Southern Germany called Emma Hauck (1878-1920) was placed in the Psychiatric University Clinic in Heidelberg. She was suffering from a severe mental disturbance and at the time of her restraint she believed that she had been contaminated and poisoned by her husband’s kiss. Within a few months she was diagnosed with Dementia Praecox and sent to an asylum for the incurable in Wiesloch where she died eleven years later at the age of forty-two. Read more

Stitched Work

These pieces of sewn text have developed from a visual diary when each day was documented with two images on paper for the space of a year. Sewing is a slow process through which one becomes aware of the marking of time in a different way. One piece takes days to complete and hours can be measured in stitches. During the process one is aware of time passing and the heart beating. By the age of fifty the average human heart will have beaten one and a half billion times by seventy five the average number of beats will be two and three quarter billion. These numbers are almost inconceivable and the stitched sampler, traditionally used to record names and birth dates can be used to highlight and emphasise their temporality. Read more

Hans Bellmer and The Games of the Doll

In 1934 Hans Bellmer together with his brother Fritz constructed their first doll. This was followed by the publication of “Die Puppe” a pocket-sized book of ten photographs of the doll in various states of assemblage and in a variety of settings with an introductory text written by Hans called “Memories of a Doll Theme”... Read more

Ar and Psychosis

The essayist Robert Pinsky writes:
(An artist) needst not so much an audience, as to feel a need to answer, a promise to respond. The promise may be a contradiction, it may be unwanted, it may go unheeded.... but it is owed, and the sense that it is owed is a basic requirement for the poet’s good feeling about the art. This need to answer, as firm as a borrowed object or a cash debt, is the ground where the centaur walks. (1) Read more