“Last winter, I came into possession of the papers of an émigré psychiatrist who practiced in New York in the late 1940s and 1950s,” Janet Malcolm explains in an article in the New York Review of Books. Malcolm is describing a set of papers she found and used as both inspiration and materials for her collages. These works were exhibited in a show, Janet Malcolm: Free Associations, that ran through January 14, 2012, at Lori Bookstein Fine Art in New York City. This sentence was also posted in the gallery.

I was in New York at the time of the exhibition and am still kicking myself for missing it. The psychiatrist’s documents describe his intimate view of American immigrants in the 1940s and their thoughts and feelings. I find the use of these notes and typewritten words within the actual collages to be mesmerizing. These images viscerally stir me and I wish I had a catalog for my collection.

Read Janet Malcolm’s text along at the New York Review of Books


/ closed eyes /

/ probably idealized image of father /

/ Tried to attribute it to an abstinence of about 3 weeks. /

P.S.: Congratulations to Linda Selby for being the winner of our BUST DIY Guide to Life Giveaway and THANK YOU to Julie for sending along a link to Janet Malcolm’s work.


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Click to read 3 comments
  1. Maria

    “as soon as she took it into her hand”!! “no beasty feelings” Hilarious! The collages are beautiful too – thanks for sharing Natalie. Can’t wait for your new book!

  2. Claudia B. Manley

    I have admired Janet Malcolm’s writing for years, and the collages are inspiring as I’ve been thinking about collage as well recently. It’s a shame there’s no catalogue although I wonder if they still have the brochure with an essay by Hilton Als available. Thanks for this bit of inspiration!