Sigmund Freud
© Max Halberstadt

Vienna 2020: Freud and the Viennese soul

Vienna 2020: Freud and the Viennese soul for download

Sigmund Freud (May 6, 1856 – September 23, 1939) was an archaeologist of the psyche. The psychologist and superstar of psychoanalysis spent most of his life in Vienna. More precisely at Berggasse 19, in the 9th district. His practice there was the mainstay of his life. It was right here that he formulated his most important theories and invited Viennese high society to recline on his famous couch. The success of his treatments and his scientific papers spread his reputation far beyond the borders of Austria. The University of Vienna later honored the great scholar with a bust, which can still be seen in the Arcade Court. When the workaholic Freud did take a break now and then, he liked to go for a walk in today's Sigmund Freud Park in front of the Votive Church, or on summer's evenings visited the nearby Café Landtmann, and in winter Café Central on Herrengasse. "Freud mania" took hold while he was still alive – and continued. To this day. For Sigmund Freud, more than perhaps anyone else, characterized a new, revolutionary image of the human being. His view of women also differed from that of his contemporaries. In Freud's life, women played the lead roles. They were his mentors, sponsors, patients and his successors. Probably the most important woman in Freud's life to the very end was his daughter Anna Freud. She followed in his footsteps, continued his teaching and accompanied him on his final journey from Vienna to London. While Freud's international reputation kept on growing, the National Socialists burned his books. At 82 years of age, he was forced to leave his Vienna in 1938. He fled into exile in London and, barely one year later and suffering from terminal cancer, he ended his own life with an overdose of morphine administered with the assistance of his family physician.
The memory of him is preserved to this day at Berggasse 19, the most important Freud location in the city. It was Freud's place of work for 47 years. The Sigmund Freud Museum has been housed in his former practice since 1971. It was in these rooms that he wrote the majority of his papers, held his Wednesday meetings and smoked his famously infamous cigars. Thanks to Marie Bonaparte, Freud's confidante of many years, he was able to take all the furnishings with him on his escape to London. It is no longer possible to marvel at Freud's couch in Vienna, but from the end of August 2020, you can walk in his footsteps in the newly renovated private rooms of Sigmund Freud. They are being opened up to the public for the first time. What's more: The work of the late neurologist and psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, who was known to Freud and Adler, can be seen not far from Berggasse at the Viktor Frankl Museum.
The online streaming service Netflix also dedicates 2020 to the founder of psychoanalysis. The new series "Freud" is expected to go on air from April. The eight 45-minute episodes produced by the Viennese production company SATEL and Bavaria Fiction for ORF and Netflix portray the early years of Sigmund Freud, who becomes entangled in a murderous conspiracy. The Austrian director and screenplay writer Marvin Kren says, "I'd like to show a 'Freud' we don't know and have never seen in this way – a man on the search for recognition, between two women, between reason and drifting." The crime thriller takes us on an exciting journey through Vienna at the end of the 19th century. The series will be broadcast on Netflix to around 148 million households in 30 different languages.
Freud was not only an outstanding scholar. He inspired, was a muse and left deep marks on art like no other. Artists of today take their inspiration from Freud, above all the Viennese street art artist Nychos, who created a contemporary monument to Freud with a mural by the Danube Canal at the Spittelau.
The Hotel Schloss Bellevue once stood on the Bellevuehöhe in the 19th district. It was a popular summer excursion destination of the Viennese – and of the Freud family. In the night from July 23 to 24, 1895, Freud dreamed the all-decisive dream here that led him to the "interpretation of dreams" – it was the birth of psychoanalysis. The year 2020 marks the 120th anniversary of the publication of Freud's famous basic work, which is still valid today. As the name suggests, the Bellevuewiese meadow still offers one of the loveliest views of Vienna there is today.
Freud revealed hidden secrets with his analyses. He looked into deep abysses, because the morbid, the melancholic, the suffering was and still is typically Vienna. And this part of the Viennese soul can still be encountered today in all manner of ways. Such as, for example, the Viennese 'Pompfüneberer' (gravedigger), who accompanied the Viennese souls to their final resting place in the cemetery. Or you can listen to the Viennese soul – at a Wienerlied concert that is just bursting with melancholy and black humor. The Viennese grumpiness, which is also known far beyond the city limits, and the often ridiculed "title mania" of the Viennese reveal their very own distinct part of the Viennese soul. So Freud the psychologist would also have rejoiced and had enough to do with the Viennese of the 21st century.
Freud therefore continues to be very much a living part of Vienna. And will remain so in the future.

Important addresses

Sigmund Freud Museum

Berggasse 19, 1090 Wien
  • Vienna City Card

  • Prices

    • Free audio guides in German, English, French, Italian, Spanish and Russian.
  • Opening times

    • Mo, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Tu, 10:00 - 18:00
    • We, 10:00 - 21:00
    • Th, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Fr, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Sa, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Su, 10:00 - 18:00
  • Accessibility

    • Elevator available
    • Further information
      • Seeing eye dogs allowed

Good to know: The Sigmund Freud Museum will re-open in May 2020 after a year of renovations.

Sigmund Freud Park

Straße des Achten Mai/Votivkirche, 1090 Wien

Sigmund Freud Park

Straße des Achten Mai/Votivkirche, 1090 Wien

Sigmund Freud Private University

Freudplatz 1, 1020 Wien

Café Landtmann

Universitätsring 4, 1010 Wien
  • Opening times

    • Mo - Su, 07:30 - 00:00
    • Piano music Su, Mo, Tu 8:00 pm - 11:00 pm (summer: only Mo, Tu)
  • Accessibility

    • Main entrance
      • no steps (Double swinging doors   120  cm  wide )
    • Further information
      • Seeing eye dogs allowed
      • Wheelchair accessible restroom available.

Good to know: Anna von Lieben, also known to Freud as case Cäcilie M., lived at the time on the beletage, or principal floor, at Palais Lieben-Auspitz, directly above Café Landtmann.

Café Central

Herrengasse/Strauchgasse, 1010 Wien
  • Opening times

    • Mo - Th, 08:30 - 17:30
    • Fr - Sa, 08:30 - 20:00
    • on holidays - Su, 10:00 - 17:30
    • Piano music daily from 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
  • Accessibility

    • Main entrance
      • 5 Steps (Double swinging doors )
    • Side entrance
      • 3 Steps (Swinging doors )
        mobile ramp available
    • Elevator available
      • 120 cm wide and 77 cm low , Door 89 cm wide
    • Further information
      • Seeing eye dogs allowed
      • Wheelchair accessible restroom available.
    • Comments

      Wheelchair-accessible restroom accessible via elevator.

University of Vienna

Universitätsring 1 , 1010 Wien
  • Opening times

    • Mo, 06:00 - 22:00
    • Tu, 06:00 - 22:00
    • We, 06:00 - 22:00
    • Th, 06:00 - 22:00
    • Fr, 06:00 - 22:00
    • Sa, 07:00 - 19:30
    • closed: 15 Aug; 15 Jul - 31 Aug: Mo-Fr open until 8 pm

Good to know: A bust of Sigmund Freud has stood in the colonnaded courtyard of the University of Vienna since 1955. The dates shown (1885-1934) refer to Freud's time as a lecturer, not his life.

Viktor Frankl Museum Vienna

Mariannengasse 1/15, 1090 Wien

Good to know: The Lower Belvedere shows the exhibition "Dalí – Freud", which deals with Freud's influence on the great Surrealist, from October 23, 2020 to March 7, 2021.


Himmelstrasse 115, 1190 Wien

Good to know: A fantastic view of Vienna can be enjoyed from the Bellevuewiese meadow today. A commemorative stone here remembers perhaps the most important dream in history.

Good to know: The series celebrates its premiere at the 70th Berlinale in February 2020 and will be available on Netflix from April 2020.

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