‘The Scream’ by Edvard Munch

Posted: January 17, 2015 in art, culture, drawing, famous quotes, movie, painting, Uncategorized
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The_Scream

     The Scream also known as The Cry is the name given to each of four versions of a painting, created as both paintings and pastels, by the Expressionist Norwegian artist Edvard Munch between 1893 and 1910. It has been described as an icon of Modern Art and “the Mona Lisa of our time. It is an iconic and haunting painting, definitely one of the darkest paintings in art history. I could only imagine in the pre-television age of the 1890’s, it was probably more haunting and dark to the general public of that time. I know it left an impact on me the first time I saw it 100 years after its creation. Powerful.

This composition left such a mark on art and culture that it has been copied and parodied by different artists of different mediums for decades. The most recent influence I can think of was the Skull-face mask worn by the killer of the popular Scream series of horror movies. Many people don’t know that the look of the villain from the movie Scream came from the influence of this painting. The mask was created by Brigitte Sleiertin, a Fun World employee, as a Halloween costume, prior to being discovered by Wes Craven for the film.

What I learned from this painting is that art can be cathartic: you can express your deepest and inner emotions through art. Art doesn’t have to be roses and landscapes all the time. As an artist I like to be able to express myself, warts and all- the beautiful and the ugly. Thus is life.

I could only imagine what Munch was feeling at the time he painted this. There is a clue as to how Munch may have been feeling from a passage in his diary:

In his diary in an entry headed, Nice 22 January 1892, Munch described his inspiration for the image:

“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.

100 years later The Scream still has an impact and I admire Edvard Munch for having the guts to present to the world his deepest and darkest emotions through this work.

–Roz Abellera

 

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