From 6th November to 27th April 2014 – Genoa – Palazzo Ducale.
“Art is the opposite of Nature. A work of art can only come from inside a person (…) Nature is the means, not the aim. If it is necessary to achieve something changing nature, you must do it (…) Art is the blood of the human heart.” Edvard Munch (1863-1944).
The presence of “The Scream” resonates at the Palazzo Ducale, although the most famous work will remain in Oslo, leaving space for the rest of his works.
The Scream, in fact is difficult to transport, after the two thefts from museums in Oslo, first from the National Gallery in 1994, and then from the Munch Museum in 2004.
Impossible also to move its 1896 pastel version, purchased by billionaire Leon Black in New York for $ 120 million in 2012.
Beyond his “manifesto” painting, which has become to represent the whole of the twentieth century expressionist art, the exhibition is a great opportunity to understand the value of his work, even in its evolutionary perspective.
In the 150th anniversary of the birth of Eduard Munch, this is the only exhibition celebrating the artist in Italy, one of the three exhibitions in Europe.
The curator of the exhibition is Marc Restellini, director of the Pinacotheque de Paris, which in 2010 dedicated to the master an extraordinary exhibition visited by over 600,000 people.
The strength of this exhibition is to take a thorough look not only to the great work of the most famous Munch, which have become true icons, but also bring to light the unknown Munch, the one kept in private. The exhibition’s primary objective is to bring to light the many facets, the innovative force, the courage and the unconventionality of Munch’s many other works.
“Making this exhibition exactly on this year of celebrations with the huge difficulties related to persuading collectors to separate temporarily from their Munch was a miracle.” – say the organizers – “The challenge was very high, but we will see extraordinary works, made available by the most important collectors of Munch “.
The Genoa event will feature over one hundred and twenty works that represent the fundamental moments of his sixty year old career.
They also represent the existential journey of the artist, who saw the pictorial language evolve from a naturalist plant, initially impressionist, to a more crude and daring incisive mode which has influenced all the art of the twentieth century.
“The exhibition tells the story – explains Restellini – a Munch artist that we could in some way considered the opposite of all that existed until then. Munch deliberately opposes to what he sees and knows. In an almost anarchic logic, he contrasts impressionism, symbolism, naturalism, to invent a form of artistic expression up in arms against everything that since his childhood has been presented to him as a social rule. ”
Munch is the artist who perhaps more than anyone else experienced awareness of the crisis of Western culture and consciousness, had a desolating look on the modernity, and to us that are at the end of the modernity and live a series of contradictions related to the heavy solitude, fear and anguish, this show can offer a glimpse of reflection on the present.
It should be added that a small but important exhibit will supplement the effort to build the public’s awareness of the artist. The Warhol After Munch exhibit will present a series of works that the pop artist par excellence created after being inspired by the Norwegian master.
The juxtaposition may seem risky, actually there is a link between the two much closer than you might suspect. Firstly, the reproducibility of the work, which is also the most shocking issue of the twentieth century, is tackled by Munch and then Warhol made it one of his main traits, through an infinite number of variations.
The Scream is one example there being no less than four different versions, but also other paintings the Norwegian artist has created multiple copies, six are the copies of the Sick Child and of the Young Women on the bridge , and even twelve those of the Vampire. Another aspect they share is the manipulation of the work, which often goes through a series of changes that have nothing to do with the design or the application of color, and then to add the great graphic
care in the layout.
A certain amount of roughness, evident in the themes, colors and expressive lines were part of his creative process, which also included the exposure of the canvases to atmospheric agents. Munch loved to paint out in the open air, beneath the snow and rain, even when the temperatures were prohibitive, and when he finished a work, he liked to subject it to, as he called it, the “horse cure”. He believed that his works were ready for public display only after they had been exposed to harsh weather conditions.
His style was bold, but he also had an innate ability to perceive changes in art brought about, first, by photography and later by cinema. Munch was the first to use photos or frames from silent films in his paintings. His mixing of techniques made him one of the most innovative artists of his time.
Also amazing is the audacity with which deletes the boundaries between media and the techniques, in his engravings, sculptures and photographs, as in his paintings, collages and films. Munch enrolled in the line of William Turner and Gustave Courbet, is the missing link in the chain that connects artists such as Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Jean Dubuffet and Jackson Pollock in the history of modernism. True innovator with regard to the contribution of kinetic art, he was also a model in terms of avant-garde and a break with the previous models “says the curator.