A penetrating reassessment of Munch's memorable painting and profound artistic legacy
This engaging book offers a fresh look at the exceptional works of Edvard Munch (1863-1944) by examining them in the light of his precarious mental state. Following a nervous breakdown in 1908, Munch underwent electroshock therapy, which prompted a marked change in his art work. The haunting Self-Portrait between the Clock and the Bed, finished one year before his death, represents a culmination of the themes of mortality, isolation, and anxiety that he explored repeatedly, and provides, in these pages, a perfect lens through which to view the artist's entire oeuvre. Informative essays consider Munch's position in the art world, his conception of self as a means of experimentation, and the psychological content of his paintings, while a previously unpublished foreword by the celebrated Norwegian novelist Karl Ove Knausgaard offers a new perspective on Munch's life and work. Featuring over 40 masterworks from throughout the painter's career, and an illustrated chronology that traces the progression of his emotional state and its influence on the images he created, this is an intimate, provocative study of an enigmatic artist and his remarkable legacy.
Gary Garrels is Elise S. Haas Senior Curator of Painting and Sculpture at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Jon-Ove Steihaug is senior curator at the Munch Museum, Oslo. Sheena Wagstaff is Leonard A. Lauder Chairman in the Department of Modern and Contemporary Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Karl Ove Knausgaard is the author of the bestselling series of novels My Struggle.