THE ART NEWSPAPER | Pac Probic:
In the small Italian town of Orvieto in 1897, Sigmund Freud had a revelation. In the town’s cathedral, before a depiction of the Last Judgement by the Renaissance painter Luca Signorelli, the 41-year-old psychoanalyst felt he had found “the greatest” depiction of the theme he had ever seen. The intense and violent fresco, which carries an odd sexual energy, was seared into his mind. Yet upon his departure, “to his immense frustration, Freud could not recall the name of the artist,” writes Nicholas Fox Weber, in his new book, Freud’s Trip to Orvieto (Bellevue Literary Press).
Through 48 short, sharp chapters (some are only a page and a half), Weber traces the psychoanalyst’s memory loss and his attempt to recall Signorelli’s name. “To his amazement, Freud could, nonetheless, see certain details of the fresco cycle perfectly in his mind’s eye,” Weber writes, which frustrated the psychoanalyst even more. At first, Freud thought…read more
Image | courtesy Wiki Commons | Luca Signorelli | The Damned Cast into Hell (1499-1504)