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Edvard Munch | Paintings and Quotes / Aforismi


By painting colors and lines and forms seen in quickened mood I was seeking to make this mood vibrate as a phonograph does. This was the origin of the paintings in The Frieze of Life.
Attraverso l'arte cerco di vedere chiaro nella mia relazione con il mondo, e se possibile aiutare anche chi osserva le mie opere a capirle, a guardarsi dentro.
To die is as if one's eyes had been put out and one cannot see anything any more. Perhaps it is like being shut in a cellar. One is abandoned by all. They have slammed the door and are gone. One does not see anything and notices only the damp smell of putrefaction.



…si dipingeranno esseri viventi che respirano e sentono, soffrono e amano. Sento che lo farò, che sarà facile. Bisogna che la carne prenda forma e che i colori vivano.


Without fear and illness, I could never have accomplished all I have.

Dopo aver acceso la lampada vedo improvvisamente la mia ombra enorme che va dalla parete al soffitto. E nel grande specchio sopra la stufa vedo me stesso, il mio stesso volto spettrale. E vivo con i morti, con mia madre, mia sorella, mio nonno e mio padre, soprattutto con lui. Tutti i ricordi, le più piccole cose, vengono alla superficie.



Senza paura e malattia la mia vita sarebbe una barca senza remi.

No longer shall I paint interiors with men reading and women knitting. I will paint living people who breathe and feel and suffer and love.

Painting picture by picture, I followed the impressions my eye took in at heightened moments. I painted only memories, adding nothing, no details that I did not see. Hence the simplicity of the paintings, their emptiness.


I find it difficult to imagine an afterlife, such as Christians, or at any rate many religious people, conceive it, believing that the conversations with relatives and friends interrupted here on earth will be continued in the hereafter.


  • Nature is not only all that is visible to the eye... it also includes the inner pictures of the soul.
  • I learned early about the misery and dangers of life, and about the afterlife, about the external punishment which awaited the children of sin in Hell.
  • I find it difficult to imagine an afterlife, such as Christians, or at any rate many religious people, conceive it, believing that the conversations with relatives and friends interrupted here on earth will be continued in the hereafter.
  • I have no fear of photography as long as it cannot be used in heaven and in hell.
  • I build a kind of wall between myself and t he model so that I can paint in peace behind it. Otherwise, she might say something that confuses and distracts me.
  • For as long as I can remember I have suffered from a deep feeling of anxiety which I have tried to express in my art.
  • My afflictions belong to me and my art - they have become one with me. Without illness and anxiety, I would have been a rudderless ship... My art is really a voluntary confession and an attempt to explain to myself my relationship with life - it is, therefore, actually a sort of egoism, but I am constantly hoping that through this I can help others achieve clarity.













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