Santiago Borja
Diván [Couch], 2010
Santiago Borja (1970)
Diván [Couch], 2010
Inkjet print on paper
80 x 120 cm

Taking as a starting point Sigmund Freud’s now iconic therapy couch, one usually covered in a traditional Iranian rug, Santiago Borja’s photograph acts as a record of his intervention into the space. In an effort to encourage new readings of Freud’s relation to Non-European cultures Borja created textiles in collaboration with the Wixarika (Huichol) community and covered the couch. His use of this particular textile tradition makes an analogy between the wixárika’s interpretation of the world through dreams and the psychoanalytical mapping of the mental geography of the conscious and unconscious. 1 By introducing a discordant visual element into Freud’s studio Borja examines Freud’s legacy highlighting the flattening categories imposed by the West and undermining imposed cultural hierarchies.

1 Catalina Lozano, “Santiago Borja – Divan: Free-Floating Attention Piece”, Freud Museum, Freud Museum London, 2010,