Freud/Tiffany and the ‘Best Possible School’

Anna Freud, Dorothy Tiffany Burlingham and the Hietzing School in 1920s Vienna

10 May 2017 to 16 July 2017

Modernism, creativity, the freedom to grow as a “free and self-reliant human being”

Hietzing School pupils in the schoolyard. Courtesy of Michael J. Burlingham.

With these beliefs, Anna Freud, the youngest daughter of Sigmund Freud, and Dorothy Tiffany Burlingham, the youngest daughter of the great American artist Louis Comfort Tiffany, founded Vienna’s Hietzing School. To Erik H. Erikson who taught there, it was “the best possible school” and  its true significance, as both the teachers and the students remember it, came to life in a dynamic exhibition at the Freud Museum London.

Four historic photographs of Sigmund Freud were on view for the first time, along with original paintings and over 75 vintage pictures from private collections in Europe and America. Notable drawings, manuscripts and autographs made vivid the founders’ vision of the Hietzing School’s origins and sequels, its day-to-day experience and its enduring influence on our understanding of education and the developing mind.


Project Director: Elizabeth Ann Danto, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Hunter College/City University of New York, widely published in history of psychoanalysis, urban public welfare and labor studies; international lecturer; author of Historical Research (Oxford University Press 2009); recipient of the Gradiva Award (USA) and the Goethe Prize (Canada) for Freud’s Free Clinics – Psychoanalysis & Social Justice, 1918-1938 (Columbia University Press 2005).

Installation at the Freud Museum London