- Type: Art Museums/Galleries
NileGuide Expert Says:
You can't visit Oslo without seeing Edvard Munch's world-famous painting The Scream
This museum houses Norway's greatest and largest collection of art. Most visitors flock here to see Edvard Munch's The Scream, one of four versions, this one painted in 1893. This painting was stolen in 1994 and, like the version taken from the Munch Museum in 2004, was subsequently recovered. The Scream, which is reproduced in countless posters around the world, still inspires artists today and continues to work its way into popular culture. For example, in a 2006 episode of The Simpsons, Bart and his friends steal a copy of The Scream in a parody of the real thefts.
Munch has paintings here beyond The Scream, a total of 58 of his works, some of them among his most celebrated, including The Dance of Life, Moonlight, and Ashes. Most of Munch's works on show were painted in the closing years of the 19th century. There are also several self-portraits of Munch -- see why he was called "the handsomest man in Norway."
The leading Norwegian Romantic landscape painter Johan Christian Dahl (1788-1857) is in fine form here, but we find his paintings a little too sentimental. Our favorite is Christian Krohg, who painted it like it was, drawing inspiration from sailors to prostitutes. Scandinavian painting in general is also showcased, with one salon containing works from the Golden Age of Danish painting.
Although not extensive compared to some national collections, European painting in general is on parade, with old masters represented from Van Dyck to Rubens, from El Greco (a remarkable St. Peter Repentant) to Cézanne and Matisse. Van Gogh weighs in with a self-portrait, Picasso with his Guitar. Look for the works of Gustav Vigeland, although you'll get better acquainted with him at Vigelandsparken.
All the art displayed was created before 1945, the year Norwegians freed themselves from the Nazi yoke. Allow 2 hours for a visit.
- © Frommer's 2013
- Very Highly Recommended 2010