View of “Hysteria: Her Hair” at the Judson Memorial
One-channel video, sound, 4’25”
Hysteria: Her Hair shows the intimate and mundane scene of a woman in the shower detangling her hair and placing it on the wall while creating different shapes. These shapes detach from their original context by becoming a sterile stain for figurative interpretation.
The audio presents a reenactment of a therapy session between Anna O. (Bertha Pappenheim) and Josef Breuer from the book “Studies on Hysteria.” This questions the 20th century patriarchal archetype where “hysteria” was attributed only to women and their sexuality. This is contrasted by the sexualization of hair on women and the repugnance and shame that the same hair receives when off their heads.