With approximately 140 works that have rarely if ever been exhibited in Germany, the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen presents the “unknown” Edvard Munch (1863–1944) at K20. These paintings, prints, and sculptures were selected by Karl Ove Knausgård (*1968).
The internationally celebrated author, like Munch himself a native Norwegian, achieved worldwide fame with his six-volume autobiographical novel, which has been translated into more than thirty languages and has received numerous prizes. His decidedly personal point of view opens up a fresh perspective onto a man who was, arguably, the most important representative of the Scandinavian avant-garde of the early twentieth century, while highlighting the continuing relevance of Munch’s concern with the embeddedness of the individual in society.
Knausgård explores the painter’s inner world while tracing Munch’s various artistic preoccupations. The author’s subjective approach results in a subdivision of the exhibition into four thematic areas: “Light and Landscape” presents shorelines and gardens, but also scenes of people working in the fields. It is followed by “The Forest” with its views of trees and meadows – a natural world that retains the upper hand in relation to human endeavors. “Chaos and Energy” provides insights into the emotional and psychological forces that drove the painter, as well as into his struggle with each work. Complementing this focus on Munch’s interior life is the conclusion, “The Others,” which features images of friends and comrades and focuses on the ways in which the individual reasserts control over reality.
Edvard Munch (1863–1944) is one of the most important artists of the early twentieth century. He was a pioneer of Expressionism and unique in his stylistic and technical inventions in the field of printmaking. Among his most important creations are world-famous paintings such as The Scream and The Sick Child—works created by the Norwegian from the 1880s onwards. After longer stays in Paris and Berlin, Munch returned to Oslo in 1909. From this time on, he created winter landscapes, flower gardens, and life-size portraits full of unexpected gaiety.
Karl Ove Knausgård was born in 1968. He is considered to be the most important Norwegian author today. The six novels of his autobiographical project “My Struggle” (“Min Kamp”) were a global sensation and set new literary standards. They have been translated into more than thirty languages and earned him numerous accolades. In 2015, Knausgård received the literary prize awarded by the German daily newspaper Die Welt, followed, in 2017, by the Jerusalem Prize for the Freedom of the Individual in Society and the Austrian State Prize for European Literature. Karl Ove Knausgård lives with his family in London.
– seen by Karl Ove Knausgård
With contributions by Karl Ove Knausgård and Anette Kruszynski.
Edited by Susanne Gaensheimer and Anette Kruszynski for the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf and Stein Olav Henrichsen for the Munch Museum, Oslo
184 pages, German edition.
Available for € 28
The exhibition “Edvard Munch – seen by Karl Ove Knausgård” will take place from October 12, 2019 - March 1, 2020 in the K20 of the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen.
Tuesday – Sunday, public holiday
11 am – 6 pm
Registration and information
Tel +49 (0) 211 8381-204
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