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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Hall of Heroes: Edvard Munch


I scream for Munch's "Scream."
This painting seems...familiar.
Although in my own work, I tend to gravitate toward the light and bright, that is certainly not where I live, day-to-day, as my poor wife will tell you. And while my output over the years has focused on the visual beauty of nature, my creativity feeds mainly on the stark, tortured and emotionally anguished images of the Expressionists. Favorite among them, of course, is Edvard Munch (pronounced "Moooonk", although if you pronounce it to rhyme with "crunch", it will make Expressionists around you laugh, and face it, they could use a smile).

Most famous for "The Scream," Munch is as well known for his woodcuts as he is for his paintings. In fact, he often did the same images in different media.


Munch is often referred to as "The Clown Prince of Norwegian Expressionism." Not.
I find his woodcuts severe, having a certain darkness that the paintings do not. He takes no opportunity to smooth out the gouges in the wood, and sometimes it looks like they were made by a prisoner who only had a nail and a board. That, of course, is a compliment.

It hasn't shown up yet, but Munch's inspiration is in me, somewhere. Maybe over there, in that cobwebbed, shadowy corner in my mind.

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