Enkele opmerkings oor die skilder Edvard Munch

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Foto van Edvard Munch: wikipedia

My dank aan Jo-Marie Claassen vir ’n uitstekende artikel oor een van die werklik treffende en invloedryke skilderye (LitNet 14 Julie 2020). Hier volg enkele tersaaklike opmerkings, asook aanhalings uit Ulrich Bischoff se boek Edvard Munch, 1863–1944 (Cologne: Benedikt Taschen, 1993). Die weergawe van die skildery wat met Claassen se artikel gepubliseer is, is dié wat in 1893 geskilder is, "tempera and oil pastel on cardbord," wat in die Nasjonalgalleriet in Oslo hang (bl 4, 52–53) – dus een van dié wat by geleentheid gesteel is. Dit is ook hierdie weergawe wat op die voorkant van Bischoff se boek verskyn. "There are several versions, as there are of all Munch's important paintings" (10).

Vrees het ’n deurslaggewende rol in Munch se lewe gespeel: "I am frightened by my own shadow" (34) en "I sensed an endless scream passing through Nature" (53). Hy het ook gesê: "Without fear and illness, my life would have been a boat without a rudder" (10). "I do not paint what I see, I paint what I have seen" (17). Christian Krohg het oor Munch geskryf: "He only sees what is essential, and needless to say that is all he paints" (28) en "He really grasps how to show what he feels" (38).

Bischoff voeg by: "This is no mere naturalism. Munch has transfigured the seen world into a landscape of the soul" (38). "Pure landscape for its own sake is of very little importance in Munch's oeuvre ... Munch's distinctive achievement lay in an emphasis on a humanized landscape ... For Munch, landscape always had to convey a message of human import: his visual idiom transformed the reproduction of landscape scenes into landscapes of the soul. Munch was very fond of photography ... Perhaps because of this, his sense of the difference between photography and painting was acute" (84–85).

Belangrik is die volgende opmerking van Bischoff, wat groter draagwydte aan die skildery gee: "... the figure (whose sex cannot be clearly established) in the various versions of 'The Scream'" (39). Daar is ’n ander skildery van Munch, "The dead mother and the child" (verskillende weergawes, bv 1897/99 en 1888/90, bl 56–57), wat die dood van sy ma op haar sterfbed in 1868 uitbeeld, met in die voorgrond Sophie, "then six years old and one year older than Edvard, holding her hands over her ears to block out the silent but painful scream of death" (56). In 1913 het Munch "Girl Yawning" geskilder (75). "A woman yawning can rapidly become a woman screaming: the step is a short one" [!] (76).

Munch het hierdie samevatting oor sy benadering tot sy kuns verskaf: "In reality, my art is a confession made of my own free will, an attempt to clarify my own notion of Life ... at bottom it is a kind of egotism, but I shall not give up hoping that with its assistance I shall be able to help others achieve their own clarity" (42).

"Portrait painting was central to Munch's art throughout his life" (80). In 1907 het Munch vir Walther Rathenau (1867–1922), ’n Duitse nywerheidsmagnaat en politikus, geskilder (79). Rathenau het van hierdie skildery gesê: "That's what you get for having your portrait done by a great artist – you look more like yourself than you really are" (80).

Lees ook:

Edvard Munch se beroemde skildery, Moeder Natuur se kreet

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