Cover of "Edvard Munch. Close-Up of a Genius"

Edvard Munch. Nærbilde av et geni
Published by Sem & Stenersen Forlag, 2013

In 1944 Rolf E. Stenersen wrote a biography of the world-renowned painter Edvard Munch, which became an instant classic. Living up to its title – Edvard Munch. Close-up of a Genius – presents a portrait that is so intimate, refreshingly honest and revealing that the artist emerges from the pages. The Norwegian daily Dagbladet wrote in 2004: “Spanning one hundred and fifty pages, it may well be the best biography ever written in Norwegian. By any account, it is one of the most personal, revealing and, not least, humorous books about a Norwegian.” 

This edition was re-published in 2013, extended with text and illustrations.  The presentation in Edvard Munch. Close-up of a Genius is built upon the author’s close observations during his acquaintanceship with the artist over many years. In his animated descriptions of encounters with Munch, Stenersen displays his well-developed sense of absurd situations and gallows humor. About the painter, Stenersen writes: “To get close to Edvard Munch it is necessary to follow him from painting to painting.”

The reader can now study the works of art, which the author explains with such enthusiasm. The rich assortment of reproductions has been selected by art historian Hans-Martin F. Flaatten, who has also written the illustration captions which elaborate on and supplement Stenersen’s views and interpretations of the motifs. This visual aspect of the book gives a whole new approach to this biography’s fascinating presentation of Munch’s life and art. Edvard Munch. Close-up of a Genius represents a totally new introduction to the lifework of the famous painter.

The translation rights of the 1944-edition were sold to many countries, like Germany, Russia, English and Denmark. This edition is sold to China.