Story Of Edvard Munch, The

Story Of Edvard Munch, The

Damaged in childhood by appalling family tragedies, the Norwegian painter Edvard Munch was obsessed with sickness, insanity and death. His life was tormented by persecution, mania and emotional and physical fragility. Relationships with women foundered in loathing and mistrust, friendships frequently turned to enmity and violence, and his dark, difficult genius was misunderstood. Yet his tortured and shockingly personal art, which at first provoked outrage, eventually gained him fame, wealth and the respect of the art establishment that had rejected him, and of his native Norway. In a single year, no fewer than eleven exhibitions of his paintings were shown throughout Europe, and the city of Oslo built a museum to house his work. Using Munch's own letters and diaries and those of his contemporaries and friends, as well as newspapers and journals of the time, Ketil Bjørnstad's 'literary biography' – which can also be read as a novel – presents us with a picture of Edvard Munch as unsparingly true as any of his self-portraits.

'Invaluable for anyone interested in the great Norwegian painter. Drawing heavily from Munch's extraordinary writing, most of which is unpublished, Bjørnstad gives the reader a lively and intimate account of an artist whose love and suffering became his work' Siri Hustvedt

'A dazzling tapestry which has the weight and inevitability of myth' Daily Mail 

Price £: 
9.99
Paperback
Published: 
02 Jan 2005
ISBN: 
9781900850940
Available from:

Story Of Edvard Munch, The

Damaged in childhood by appalling family tragedies, the Norwegian painter Edvard Munch was obsessed with sickness, insanity and death. His life was tormented by persecution, mania and emotional and physical fragility. Relationships with women foundered in loathing and mistrust, friendships frequently turned to enmity and violence, and his dark, difficult genius was misunderstood. Yet his tortured and shockingly personal art, which at first provoked outrage, eventually gained him fame, wealth and the respect of the art establishment that had rejected him, and of his native Norway. In a single year, no fewer than eleven exhibitions of his paintings were shown throughout Europe, and the city of Oslo built a museum to house his work. Using Munch's own letters and diaries and those of his contemporaries and friends, as well as newspapers and journals of the time, Ketil Bjørnstad's 'literary biography' - which can also be read as a novel - presents us with a picture of Edvard Munch as unsparingly true as any of his self-portraits.

'Invaluable for anyone interested in the great Norwegian painter. Drawing heavily from Munch's extraordinary writing, most of which is unpublished, Bjørnstad gives the reader a lively and intimate account of an artist whose love and suffering became his work' Siri Hustvedt

'A dazzling tapestry which has the weight and inevitability of myth' Daily Mail 

Price £: 
9.99
eBook
Published: 
10 Jun 2013
ISBN: 
9780957330481
Available from:

About the author

  • Ketil Bjørnstad

    Ketil Bjørnstad (born 25 April 1952 in Oslo, Norway) is a Norwegian pianist, composer and author. Versatile and prolific, he has published more than 30 books – poetry, novels and factual accounts of the lives of the painters Oda Krohg and Edvard Munch, the author Hans Jæger, the musician Ole Bull and the film artist Liv Ullmann. His books have been published in several languages.

    Titles by Ketil Bjørnstad