Almost Wordless Wednesday: The Scream


Edvard Munch's The Scream (Skrik, 1893) is my all time favorite piece of art, and certainly one of the world's most recognizable. Just one look and you are drawn into the fear and agony and terror on the subject's face. But while this piece of art is widely recognized, what is little known is that "The Scream" is actually a series of expressionist paintings by the Norwegian artist, depicting an agonized figure against a blood red skyline. It is said by some to symbolize the human species overwhelmed by an attack of existential angst. The landscape in the background is Oslofjord, viewed from the hill of Ekeberg, in Oslo, Norway.

The Scream has been much used in parody on everything from Shoebox Greeting Cards to fictional television and movie characters--probably most recognizably in The Simpsons and Home Alone.


Munch created several versions of The Scream in various media. The Munch Museum holds one of two painted versions of the piece and one pastel. The National Gallery of Norway holds the other painted version. A fourth version, in pastel, is owned by Norwegian billionaire Petter Olsen. Munch also created a lithograph of the image.


The Scream has been the target of several high-profile art thefts. In 1994, the version in the National Gallery was stolen. It was recovered several months later. In 2004, The Scream and Madonna (not the pop singer) were stolen from the Munch Museum. Both paintings were recovered in 2006. They had sustained some damage and are due to go back on display in May 2008, after undergoing restoration.

I have a magnet of The Scream on my refrigerator. It comes in handy. And every once in a while, when it seems like things are a little rough, it's great just to scream as loud as you can for as long as you can. That's my cure for an attack of existential angst. I always feel better after a good scream; I bet you will too.

Thanks for reading.

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Marie said...

Yeh, Edvard Munch's famous painting, The Scream, is probably the most well known in the world. I also read that it was sensationally stolen twice from the National Gallery of Norway!

April 23, 2008 8:39 AM
Roxiticus Desperate Housewives said...

First visit today via the EntreCard widget on Roxiticus Best Blogs, where EntreCard Design Shop by Matt Urdan is still prominently featured. I like The Scream...looks like me when dealing with Patriot Media/Comcast customer service!

Have a great day, we've got 80 degrees here, hope the weather is treating you as well...

Roxiticus Desperate Housewives

April 23, 2008 1:29 PM
Berryvox said...

Ha, I never thought of the Home Alone movie poster as a tribute to that painting.

April 23, 2008 5:07 PM
Roxiticus Desperate Housewives said...


Stopped by to visit you on this fine night in the Roxiticus Valley. How 'bout it...are you going to join me on SocialSpark?

Have a great night, hope to see you in BotB later...

April 23, 2008 6:26 PM
Roxiticus Desperate Housewives said...

Ha! Now it's your turn to take on that sports guy in BotB...I voted for you, good luck!

April 23, 2008 10:12 PM
Stine said...

There are several versions, as with many of Munchs paintings.
Skrik certainly is one of our national icons!

April 24, 2008 2:43 AM
Roxiticus Desperate Housewives said...

Here's a Scream for you...'re it! This one gives you the chance to rant (and lots of link love)...

Roxiticus Desperate Housewives

April 24, 2008 2:54 AM

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