And not just them, if we look back to the Prinzhorn Collection, by delving more deeply into the ethics of it, I begin to question if it was right that Prinzhorn should have laid bare all these mentally ill peoples' deepest emotions and expressions for the world to see. He collected over 5000 pieces from hundreds of mental patients. Do you really think he stopped to tap on the chicken wire glass of each padded cell to ask if they actually minded their work being exhibited like meat on a slab? Doubtful.
Just because he could make this collection, does it mean he should have? The works that were exhibited in the collection were incredibly personal and, to each patient, an expression of how they felt. Did Prinzhorn really have the right to use this work when it wasn't his own? It's a fine line between exhibition and exploitation. The art that was collected was originally intended to be used diagnostically to assist the doctors with their patients' cases; so surely the display of the collection is on a par with putting the image of a cancer victim's brain scan on a wall of a gallery, or a therapist publishing a patients free-association writing. It's morally skewed and even a little sick and distasteful.
Another side to this, possibly even more crass, is that many of the patients in Prinzhorn's Collection, may have not been drawing their 'sick', 'disturbed' and 'troubled' minds at all. They may have been perfectly happy and just drawn a random picture that happens to look like it's created from pain. If that was the case, it's even more twisted, as Prinzhorn will have been using their (what appeared to be) expressions of torment and misery, to tap into the public's morbid fascination. Because frankly, morbidity and anguish can at times appear fascinating in a voyeuristic way, and I've no doubt Prinzhorn was well aware of this when he was selecting his pieces... clever boy?