Had a Munch-themed day. He’s the most famous artist from Norway, and the Munch museum is a lovely place. Currently they have a fascinating exhibit comparing Munch with Van Gogh.
Why pair these two artists? Well, it seems that in 2008 the curators of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam polled visitors about which Van Gogh paintings they were sorry were not on exhibit there in Amsterdam. The winners were “Starry Night” (of course), the self-portraits…. and “The Scream.”
Yeah. “The Scream.”
This gave them an idea. If the public confused Van Gogh and Munch already, why not do an exhibit exploring their relationship?
It turns out there’s actually a lot to think about when comparing Munch and Van Gogh. Even though Edvard Munch was ten years younger than his Dutch colleague, they both entered the art world the same year. Van Gogh was a huge influence on Munch.
I had a great time at the exhibit, and was happy to see (one of) the original “Scream”s, as well as one of my favorite Van Gogh’s, “The Potato Eaters.”
Afterwards I took the streetcar to the Ekeberg Slope, a large wooded park that contains, among many other things, the spot depicted in Munch’s “The Scream.” While at that spot working on my stupid Scream photo, I fell into a terrific extended conversation with a mountain biker.
He made an interesting observation about Americans. “You are a much more mobile people than we are,” he said. “In Norway, if the main business of a town closes, the people who worked there just stay put and go on public assistance. In America they’d be much more likely to move somewhere else to look for work.” I wonder if he’s right?
There were some lovely views from this high park. This group of new office buildings are referred to as “The Bar Code.”
And here’s a family enjoying the view.
And this gorgeous couple adding to the view:
I also had a great time taking a Segway tour of Oslo. I had two tourguides, who for some reason were both named Andy. “Our boss is also named Andy,” they admitted. Some things are best left unexplained.
The only hitch to this particular Segway tour was when I fell. My hands slipped off of the controls when I hit a bump and the device went forward and I fell straight back. My foot was black and blue for nearly a month. Worse, I might have jostled something in my spine, as a week later I began having nerve pain in the extremeties. My doc and I are currently investigating. The symptoms are gradually getting better, which I think is a combination of natural healing and the fact that I’ve been lifting weights for the last five weeks; surely getting a little stronger would help this sort of injury.
By the way, I saw this image on a wall in a hall in a mall in Oslo. Does it remind anyone of a video game from last year?