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H. A. Brendekilde | Udslidt (Worn Out), 1889

Hans Andersen Brendekilde's (Danish painter, 1857-1942) most famous painting is Udslidt (Worn Out).
He painted it for the World Exposition in Paris 1889, the 100 years celebration of the French Revolution.
In the catalogue it is called Au Secours.
It was exhibited in Copenhagen 1890, Munich 1891 (Zu Hülfe) and Chicago 1893 (Worn Out).

Hans Andersen Brendekilde | Worn out, 1889 (detail) | Funen's Art Museum

Since then it has been permanently exhibited at Brandts in Odense.
Worn Out was again exhibited in Groningen and in Munich in 2012 and 2013.
This painting is monumental (207 x 270 cm) and in the centre a woman is screaming over a dead man, worn out due to hard labour in the still feudal and poor, rural society.

Edvard Munch had several Danish friends and he often visited and stayed in Copenhagen.
One of his good, Danish friends, the painter Johan Rohde, accompanied him to the great Exhibition of Nordic Painters in Copenhagen in 1888, when Brendekilde was represented with 5 paintings, among these his large and almost impressionistic Forår (Spring), a painting of a forest with anemones and a young couple and mounted in one of his impressive arts and crafts frames.

Hans Andersen Brendekilde | Worn out, 1889 (detail) | Funen's Art Museum

Munch had two paintings at this exhibition.
In those years Munch was in his naturalistic-impressionistic period and he must have seen Brendekilde's big and magnificent paintings.

In Paris 1889 Brendekilde was represented by Worn Out and three other paintings, and Munch had one painting at this exhibition.
Edvard Munch lived in Paris and visited the World Exhibition several times.
Brendekilde also visited the exhibition.
The paintings of both artists were in the same building "Palais des Beaux Arts" first floor.
Worn Out was in the room "Denmark" and Munch's painting Morning is in the room "Norway".

Edvard Munch, 1889 | National Library of Norway

The same entrance led to these two rooms, and there was no door between them.
Thus Munch could not avoid seeing Worn Out, the monumental painting with "the scream" in the centre.

Worn Out even received a silver medal.
One must remember that through all his life Munch suffered from fear of death.
His mother and sister died in 1868 and 1877 and his father died in November 1889, at the same time when he saw Worn Out with the dead man and his wife screaming.
From now on Munch may have seen Worn Out one or two times more as well as printed copies and have discussed it with his friends or Rohde in Denmark.
Worn Out was exhibited in Copenhagen in 1890.
It is not certain but possible that Munch visited this exhibition.
In Munich 1891, Brendekilde was represented by Worn Out (German Zu Hülfe) and one of his Winter Landscapes.

He received a gold medal.
Munch had 3 paintings at this exhibition.
It is doubtful but possible that Munch visited this exhibition.

Hans Andersen Brendekilde | Worn out, 1889 (detail) | Funen's Art Museum

Brendekilde's scream seems to be the first scream of a living person mentioned by name in the history of painting.

It depicts a living person's reaction to a state of society.
The names of both models are well known and they were wife and husband.

In 1889-1891 (probably 1889) Munch made a preliminary sketch for the Scream - "Mann som går langs en vei" - with a lonely old worn out man walking with a stick alone in a road in a flat Danish landscape with trees in the background, reminding one very much of Worn Out.

One can also compare it with the preliminary study to Worn Out.
This preliminary study is Stensamlere or Stone Collectors, painted between 1883 and 1887.
In Stone Collectors, three persons and an old man stand between furrows similar to the road lines in Munch's sketch.

Four years passed after the painting of Worn Out (1889) before Munch painted The Scream ("Skrik") in 1893.

Munch had many strange explanations of the background for The Scream.
Studies of letters, notes and sketches by Munch do not give much information concerning other artists.

To art historians and Munch specialists this research and theory is totally new.
Munch was from the beginning inspired by Brendekilde's original scream in Worn Out, which he transformed into his symbolistic scream of desperation, alienation and anxiety in the new state of society.
It is probably a self-portrait.
There is a direct line from Munch's Scream to the well-known screams later in the 20. century (Pablo Picasso, Francis Bacon, Asger Jorn, Andy Warhol etc.).
In 2007 Max Ginsburg painted War Pieta, which reminds one of Worn Out.

Hans Andersen Brendekilde | Worn out (L'Urlo), 1889 | Funen's Art Museum

"Udslidt" / "Worn Out" o "L'urlo" di Brendekilde sembra essere il primo grido di una persona vivente menzionato per nome nella storia della pittura.
Descrive la reazione di una persona vivente ad uno stato della società.

Passarono quattro anni dal dipinto Worn Out (1889) prima che Edvard Munch (1863-1944) dipingesse il suo famoso Urlo ("Skrik") nel 1893.

Per gli storici dell'arte e gli specialisti di Munch questa ricerca e teoria sono totalmente nuove.
Munch si è ispirato fin dall'inizio all'urlo originale di Brendekilde in "Worn Out", che ha trasformato nel suo urlo simbolico di disperazione, alienazione ed ansia nel nuovo stato della società.
Probabilmente è un autoritratto.