With Closed Eyes – Gauguin and Munch





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With Closed Eyes – Gauguin and Munch

17 February - 22 April 2018

Paul Gauguin (1848–1903) and Edvard Munch (1863–1944), two artists who in all likelihood never met, were instrumental in developing modern art during the 19th-century fin-de-siècle. Both of them used trial and error to develop an artistic idiom that would reflect human life instimulating new ways.

Gauguin’s images and subject matter, unlike Munch’s, were often derived from his encounters with foreign cultures, but both Gauguin and Munch based their art on thoughts and emotions above all else. Gauguin is said to have remarked that he closed his eyes in order to see, while Munch famously put it like this: “I don’t paint what I see, but what I saw”. Both Gauguin and Munch encourage us to turn our gaze inwards and focus on the indelible impressions that art is able to make.

With Closed Eyes – Gauguin and Munch shows a wealth of prints, in addition to select paintings and sculptures that document the artists’ experimental approaches to a variety of artistic genres. In addition to a complete presentation of Gauguin’s most significant prints, the exhibition includes a selection of other key works from the French master, including three oil paintings and other rare objects such as ceramics, wood carvings, printing blocks and copies of Gauguin’s self-published satirical newspaper Le Sourire (The Smile). By presenting a similarly multifarious and stimulating selection of Munch’s prints and paintings, the exhibition sheds light on various issues related to printing techniques and representations of women.

The exhibition thereby gives visitors the chance to see connections between the two artists, but also to reflect on the relevance they have today.

Image on top: Edvard Munch, Sommernatt. Stemmen, (1896) Foto: Munchmuseet


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