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Objects of Obsession

Bethlem Museum of the Mind is excited to announce a new digital video series in partnership with the Royal Academy and The Space featuring leading British artists and their Object of Obsession.

As part of the Royal Academy’s 250th-anniversary celebrations, three Royal Academicians will take part in a series of talks with broadcaster and RA artistic director Tim Marlow about their chosen Object of Obsession. The work, by another artist, maybe one that has transformed or transfixed them, provoked an emotional response, inspired them, or perhaps changed their own work.

Each talk will be hosted by the gallery or museum which houses the piece, and we are delighted that artist Cornelia Parker has chosen ‘Sketch of an Idea for Crazy Jane’ by Richard Dadd from the Bethlem Museum of the Mind collection.

Cornelia will visit the museum on Friday 16th February to explore the reasons why Dadd’s painting holds a personal meaning and relevance to her artistic process. She will be in discussion with broadcaster and RA artistic director Tim Marlow.

The revelatory encounter will be filmed and streamed live across our Facebook and YouTube page to art fans across the globe on the dates below. We will also stream the other talks from the series. Find out more about the events.


This series of talks aims to set up new and lasting collaborations between regional galleries to build their digital presence. It aims to set up a new distribution network of shared digital content and shared effort between arts organisations to attract new online audiences.

The Royal Academy is an international institution that embraces the opportunities of digital technology both in its relationship with global audiences and in its potential for collaboration with other institutions.

Bethlem Museum of the Mind celebrates the first of many occasions when we hope to make our unique collection more accessible to a wider audience.

Cornelia Parker And Crazy Jane
Image on left: Cornelia Parker RA, Photo by Benedict Johnson. Image on right: "Sketch of an idea for Crazy Jane," Richard Dadd (1855)