Edvard Munch (12 December 1863 - 23 January 1944) was a Norwegian painter and printmaker whose intensely evocative treatment of psychological themes built upon some of the main tenets of...
Edvard Munch (12 December 1863 - 23 January 1944) was a Norwegian painter and printmaker whose intensely evocative treatment of psychological themes built upon some of the main tenets of late 19th-century Symbolism and greatly influenced German Expressionism in the early 20th century. One of his most well-known works is The Scream of 1893. The 1910 painting was stolen in 2004, from The Munch Museum in Oslo, but recovered in 2006 with limited damage. The 1893 version (shown here) was likewise stolen and recovered from the National Gallery in Oslo in 1994. The Scream is Munch's most famous work and one of the most recognizable paintings in all art. It has been widely interpreted as representing the universal anxiety of modern man. Painted with broad bands of garish color and highly simplified forms, and employing a high viewpoint, the agonized figure is reduced to a garbed skull in the throes of an emotional crisis. With this painting, Munch met his stated goal of the study of the soul, that is to say the study of my own self. Munch wrote of how the painting came to be: I was walking down the road with two friends when the sun set; suddenly, the sky turned as red as blood. I stopped and leaned against the fence, feeling unspeakably tired. Tongues of fire and blood stretched over the bluish black fjord. My friends went on walking, while I lagged behind, shivering with fear. Then I heard the enormous, infinite scream of nature. He later described the personal anguish behind the painting, for several years I was almost mad... You know my picture, 'The Scream?' I was stretched to the limit-nature was screaming in my blood... After that I gave up hope ever of being able to love again.