Anton Ehrenzweig

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Anton Ehrenzweig (1908-1966) was a trained lawyer who was very interested in modern art and modern music and who abandoned his formal career after fleeing Austria after the "Anschluss" with Germany in 1938. He studied law, psychology and art in Vienna and settled in England in 1938. Ehrenzweig was a lecturer in Art Education at Goldsmiths College, University of London. He wrote The Psychoanalysis of Artistic Vision and Hearing (1953)[1] and The Hidden Order of Art (1967).[2] Ehrenzweig also published numerous articles.[3][4][5][6][7] His ideas can be summarized as the discovery of the organizing role of the unconscious mind in any act of creativity and an analysis of the layered structure of the unconscious mind and of the dynamic mental processes which an artist undergoes in the creative act.

The Hidden Order of Art has been in continuous publication since 1967, and is considered one of the three classics of art psychology, along with Rudolf Arnheim's Art and Visual Perception and Herschel Chipp's Theories of Modern Art.

Ehrenzweig wrote the introduction to the catalogue for an early show by Bridget RIley at London's Gallery One, May 1962. He also reviewed one of her exhibitions for "Art International" in February 1965.


  1. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1953) The Psychoanalysis of Artistic Vision and Hearing New York, Geo Braziller
  2. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1967) The Hidden Order of Art Paladin
  3. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1949)'The Origin of the Scientific and Heroic Urge' Intern J Psychoanal 30/2, 1949
  4. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1960) 'Alienation versus Self-Expression' The Listener LXIII 1613 1960
  5. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1964) 'The Undifferentiated Matrix of Artistic Imagination' The Psychoanalytic Study of Society III 1964
  6. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1965) 'Towards a Theory of Art Education' (A Report) Goldsmiths College University of London
  7. ^ Ehrenzweig A (1965) 'Bridget Riley's pictorial Space' Art International IX/I 1965


  • Ehrenzweig, Anton (1967). The Hidden Order of Art. University of California Press. ISBN 9780520038455. 
  • Ehrenzweig, Anton (1999) [1965]. The Psycho-analysis of Artistic Vision and Hearing: An Introduction to a Theory of Unconscious Perception. Psychology Press. ISBN 9780415209564.