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The Wick - The Sun, 1909, Edvard Munch

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The Sun, 1909
Edvard Munch

Born in Norway in 1863, Edvard Munch is best known for sombre works — from paintings and watercolours to drawings and lithographs — that explore matters of human mortality, anxiety and emotional suffering. But he also produced paintings of nature, recreation and long summer days by the sea, suffused with luminous light and vibrant colours. After suffering a nervous breakdown in 1908, Munch returned to Norway to lead a quiet life, finding inspiration in the landscape, farm labourers and animals around him. Created for the University of Oslo’s new ceremonial hall (Aula), The Sun (1909) depicts a glowing sunrise over the rocky archipelago off Kragerø. Not only does it reflect Munch’s newly optimistic outlook but also his interest in nature and Vitalism, a school of thought that promoted health and hygiene and emphasized the sun as an energy-giving source.

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