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Books, Journals, New Media
January 20, 1999

Art and PsychosisBeyond Reason: Art and Psychosis—Works from the Prinzhorn Collection

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


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JAMA. 1999;281(3):288-289. doi:10.1001/jama.281.3.288

This fascinating exhibit catalogue features three essays and 210 plates of the Prinzhorn Collection. The collection was assembled between 1918 and 1921 by Dr Hans Prinzhorn, a German art historian and psychiatrist, and Dr Karl Wilmanns, director of the psychiatric clinic of Heidelberg University from 1918 to 1933. It contains around 5000 works made by persons in psychiatric asylums in Europe. The collection is unique in interconnecting the history of German culture, art, and psychiatry. It is said to raise questions "about the nature of individual self-expression, about intention and authenticity, about boundaries between artistic creativity and mental disturbance, and about definitions of art itself."

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