Psychoanalysis today

A couch, a chair, and language - that's it. Because, as Freud put it, psychoanalysis "brooks no listener," there has been a great deal of speculation about what exactly happens on the couch and the chair. Film has taken a greater interest in these fantasies than any other medium. It has explored them in every conceivable way - derisively, lovingly, spitefully - offering exaggerated and even utopian views. The images on the screen have shaped our notions of psychoanalysis much more than the real work in treatment, which remains invisible to most.

There are some 800 practicing analysts in Berlin. For the exhibition we asked them to take pictures of the most important tool of their trade: the couch. The series of images shown in the exhibition is the result. In our Couch Game "The View from the Couch" take a look at these couches and see if you can put each one in the right room.

Most analysts no longer draw directly on Freud's work, and many consider his method outdated, but minimalist furnishings still remain contemporary.