NEW YORK — Maybe it's a sign of the times, but Edvard Munch, the epic Symbolist painter whose work centered on illness, loneliness and anxiety, is about to be the toast of the town.
His remarkably modern-looking prints go up Tuesday at Scandinavia House here and visitors may find it hard to believe the artist died 62 years ago. Munch, probably best known for his painting "The Scream," also will have top billing in two unrelated events next month. The Museum of Modern Art aims to raise the artist's profile with "Edvard Munch: The Modern Life of the Soul." The show, which bows Feb. 19 and runs through May 8, will be the first to honor his work in an American museum in nearly 30 years. In London, Norwegian shipping magnate Fred Olsen's collection of Munch paintings is expected to go for up to $21 million at a Sotheby's sale.
A sampling of his etchings, lithographs and woodcuts will be showcased at Scandinavia House's "Edvard Munch: Symbolism in Print, Highlights from the Museum of Modern Art." The show's organizer, Deborah Wye, noted how Munch saved copper plates, woodblocks and lithographic stones used for printmaking in order to use them again, sometimes tweaking the template or using different colors. Munch also liked to make woodblocks in separate pieces like a jigsaw puzzle, which gave him the freedom to alter a design. In total, he made about 750 compositions in 30,000 variations.
Like other Symbolist artists, all those cold, dark years of living in Scandinavia took a toll on Munch's psyche, but his seemingly gloomy subject matter was rooted in personal hardship. Munch lost his mother and older sister to premature deaths. Prints of "The Sick Child" actually reflect his sister's struggle and demise from tuberculosis, which is hinted at with yellow tones, Wye said.
Artists, especially younger ones who have taken to using narratives in recent years, will be particularly drawn to Munch's prints, said Wye, who is also the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Chief Curator of Prints and Illustrated Book at the MoMA. "In terms of a more general audience, the things he addresses — loneliness, anxiety, sickness, death and jealousy — all those universal questions, are always relevant."
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews
@prada is introducing a new project at its men’s fall 2018 show this Sunday: “Prada Invites.” The fashion house invited four celebrated creative minds – @ronanaerwanbouroullec, Konstantin Grcic, @herzogdemeuron and @rem.koolhaas – to each create a unique item with its iconic nylon material. The designs will be unveiled on the runway show, which will take place at the company’s warehouse in Viale Ortles 25. #wwdfashion #mfwm (📷: @martinocarrera)
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion