My friend Chris sent me a link to this article, “Munch Masterpieces Destroyed?” which appeared in a Norwegian web publication called Aftenposten. In the nutshell, the article suggests that, according to one source, the people who took Munch’s paintings “The Scream” and “Madonna” burned them to destroy the evidence. As the subject line of my friend’s email put it, “this would suck.”
Still, it wouldn’t suck quite as bad as it could suck. For one thing, the newspaper article suggests that the source of this information isn’t terribly reliable; I kind of get the impression it’s the Matt Drudge of Norway who is saying the paintings have been burned. For another, Munch actually painted a couple of different versions of “The Scream” (which is also frequently enough translated as “The Cry,” too). I mean, there is the Scream, but there are other screams out there.
And besides all that, isn’t the current cultural value of the “The Scream” kind of tied to all the sort of weird re-presentations of it, the blow-up dolls, the mousepads, posters, etc?
Okay, maybe that’s a reach. Just trying to look on the bright side, which is kind of hard to do when talking about the artwork of Edvard Munch.