In 1938 after Sigmund Freud had fled from Vienna, Edmund Engelman took the only pictures of the place where Sigmund Freud, the founder of Psychoanalysis, had lived and worked for 40 years. The historical apartment and practice at Berggasse 19, where todays Sigmund Freud Museum is, were vacated. Just before that Engelman documented the Birthplace of Psychoanalysis in every detail with black and white photographs. With these pictures he created the only available records of the place where groundbreaking works like “Traumdeutung” were written and famous patients had come and gone: “I remember that I was very nervous that morning in 1938 when I was walking through the empty streets towards Berggasse 19. My Suitcase with the cameras, statives and films in it seemed to get heavier with every step I took. I thought every person passing by me must see at the first glance that I´m on my way to Dr. Sigmund Freuds residence, with a plan that won’t please the national socialists” Engelman writes. His portraits of Sigmund Freud who was marked by severe illness, of his wife Martha and his daughter Anna short before their escape are shocking testimony to a dark time.
Monika Pessler ist seit 2014 Direktorin des Sigmund Freud Museums. Sie studierte Kunstgeschichte in Graz und absolvierte die Ausbildung zur Museums- und Ausstellungs-kuratorin. Tätigkeiten an der Kärntner Landesgalerie (heutiges MMKK), für das zeitgenössische Kunstfestival „steirischer herbst“ und im Atelier des Künstlers Peter Kogler. 2003 übernahm Monika Pessler die Direktion der Österreichischen Friedrich und Lillian Kiesler-Privatstiftung.