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Edvard Munch

Norwegian artist Edvard Munch (1863 - 1944) explored existentialist themes and universal life experiences in his paintings and prints. Much of his work was fueled by his childhood trauma of losing both his mother and sister to tuberculosis. He would later endure his father's and brother's deaths, which furthered his sense of loss, loneliness, and alienation. In the 1890s, Munch worked on his Frieze of Life, depicting universal subjects of angst, love, sex and death from a very personal perspective. In 1908, he suffered from a nervous breakdown brought on by drinking and depression. After his release from the hospital, his work became calmer and less introspective, often focusing on the external world. Having worked in France and Germany, Munch returned to Norway permanently after his breakdown and continued his artistic career until his death at the age of 81.
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