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The Scream On The Block

from the NYT’s Arts Beat

‘The Scream’ Heads for the Auction Block

By CAROL VOGEL

It has adorned everything from mugs and t-shirts to key chains, anti-George Bush campaign buttons, inflatable dolls and iPad covers. Now a version of Edvard Munch’s celebrated painting “The Scream’’ will be up for sale at Sotheby’s in New York on May 2nd, the auction house announced on Tuesday morning. Officials there estimate it could bring more than $80 million.

Munch made four versions of the composition, which has become the embodiment of angst and existential dread. Three are in Norwegian museums and this one, pastel on board, from 1895, is the only “Scream” still in private hands. It is being sold by Petter Olsen, a Norwegian businessman and shipping heir whose father, Thomas, was a friend, neighbor and patron of the artist.

Besides being one of the most recognizable images in art history, “The Scream’’ is also one of the most often stolen. Versions of it have been taken twice, first in 1994, when two thieves entered the National Gallery of Norway and fled with an 1893 “Scream” (it was recovered unharmed later that year), and then in 2004, when masked gunmen stole the 1910 version as well as Munch’s “Madonna” from the Munch Museum, also in Oslo (both works were recovered two years later).

[ click to read full article at the New York Times ]

Posted on February 23, 2012 by Editor

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