Edvard Munch… un poèm de vie

“Edvard Munch. A Poem of Life, Love and Death” is a large retrospective of the Norwegian painter’s work at the Musée d’Orsay (until January 22, 2023).  World famous for his iconic painting “The Scream,” Munch occupies a pivotal place in the birth of modernity. In 1892 about “The Scream” Munch wrote in his diary: “One evening I was walking along a path, the city was on one side and the fjord below. I felt tired and ill. I stopped and looked out over the fjord – the sun was setting, and the clouds turning blood red. I sensed a scream passing through nature; it seemed to me that I heard the scream. I painted this picture, painted the clouds as actual blood. The color shrieked. This became “The Scream.”
For Munch, the human experience is a journey of life, death and rebirth… a melancholy poem. With his paintings he developed a novel expressionist iconography inspired by painters such as Gauguin and philosophers Friedrich Nietzsche and Henri Bergson. The exhibition—with about a hundred paintings, drawings and  prints— reflects the artist’s entire career emphasizing the diversity of his work.

Ten years ago a pastel version of “The Scream” by Munch fetched nearly $120 million at Sotheby’s in New York.  But  in 1892 when he exhibited his work in Berlin many were shocked. Later in 1937 the Nazis labeled him a “degenerate” confiscating 82 of his pieces from German Museums. The current exhibition of his work at the Musée d’Orsay is evidence that —even after more than one hundred years— Munch’s work still carries a punch.

Edvard Munch. Un poème de vie, d’amour et de mort, to Jan 22, 2023, Musée d’Orsay, Paris