The Scream

' The Scream' (left) and 'Madonna' - slightly damaged goods (Courtesy of Munch Museet)

Norway doesn’t often make international headlines. There’s the Nobel Peace Prize of course. And surveys that pop up every now and again comparing quality of life, the cost of living, gender equality in various parts of the world. Norway always gets a mention in those. And then there’s Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream’.
The painting has been stolen and retrieved twice - or at least two different versions of it have been stolen and eventually recovered. The last time, in August 2004, it took two years to find it, by which time it had taken a bit of a knocking and had suffered some water damage.
Yesterday, we braved the wind, cold and rain (yes Spring has done a runner yet again) to visit the Munch Museum. Unfortunately ‘The Scream’, worth around £50 million, is still in the final stages of restoration after its mishap so was not to be seen. It will be re-exhibited from the end of May, together with the relatively cheap by comparison (only £5 million) ‘Madonna', which was also stolen in the 2004 heist.
Getting into the museum was akin to going through to departures in an airport: no fluids, no large bags, an x-ray conveyer belt, metal detectors and stern-faced staff in uniform. It sort of made me nervous taking somewhat from the artistic experience but I guess the museum isn’t taking any chances: there are some international headlines the Norwegians must be anxious to avoid and I bet ‘‘The Scream’ Stolen – Again!’ is one of them.


Joanne Rasmussen said...

When we visited Norway I was very amused by the artist - Odd Nerdrum (something like that).

OSLO said...

Joanne, I haven't heard of him but will be sure to look him up.

Women Rule Writer said...

Why oh why (or who oh who) are these philistines stealing practically priceless art and then letting it get damaged?! Water damaged, at that. It beggars belief.
Re the security, I guess once bitten, twice shy for the museum owners.
Still, it will be great to see The Scream in situ when you go back the next time. I was a Curehead as a teenager in Dublin and I remember studying the painting for art history for the Leaving, and LOVING it. God be with the days!! Enjoy!