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“The Scream” by Edvard Munch

The Scream

“The Scream” by Edvard Munch

“The Scream” by Edvard Munch depicts a figure with an agonised expression on a walkway overlooking the blue water and a tumultuous orange sky dominating the top third of the artwork. He later described his inspiration for the painting:

“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 colour shrieked. This became The Scream.”

The German title Munch gave these works is “The Scream of Nature”. The Scream communicates immediate strong feelings upon viewing and its impact on viewers has propelled this painting into the popular culture. Edvard Munch created four versions of “The Scream” both paintings and pastels between 1893 and 1910 plus a lithograph stone of the image.

Edvard Munch was a Norwegian painter and printmaker whose evocative treatment of psychological themes built upon Symbolism and greatly influenced German Expressionism in the early 20th century. His best-known work is The Scream. The Scream has been imitated, parodied, and following its copyright expiration outright copied, which led to its highly recognisable status in popular culture. The image has used in the promotion of books, music, movies, music, clothing, cultural events and pop culture merchandise.

Explore Popular Paintings

Reflections

  • Is this how Nature feels?

The Scream

  • Title:              The Scream
  • German:         Der Schrei der Natur
  • Artist:             Edvard Munch
  • Created:         1893
  • Material:         Oil, tempera, pastel and crayon on cardboard
  • Dimensions:   91 cm × 73.5 cm (36 in × 28.9 in)
  • Museum:        National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design – Norway

Edvard Munch

  • Name:              Edvard Munch
  • Born:                1863 – Ådalsbruk, Løten, United Kingdoms of Sweden and Norway
  • Died:                1944 (aged 80) – Oslo, Norway
  • Nationality:      Norwegian
  • Movement:      Expressionism, Symbolism
  • Notable Works:

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“Straight ahead is shortest, but not always easiest.”
– Norwegian Proverb

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Photo Credit: Edvard Munch [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons