Norwegian artist Edvard Munch is known for his paintings that express intense emotions and feelings, often centered around themes of mortality and fear. One of his notable works is the oil on canvas painting Ashes, created in 1894. The painting depicts a young couple in a forest setting with an atmosphere of despair and hopelessness. The man sits with his head in his hands, while the woman’s face reveals a tragic and brooding expression.
Ashes reflects Munch’s preoccupation with partnerships, living, dying, and fear. The artwork aligns with his famous Scream painting in its exploration of anxiety, alienation, and anguish. Like many of Munch’s works, Ashes expresses more internal emotion than it projects an image of outside reality.
Edvard Munch called his paintings his “children” and often refused to sell them. His focus on internal feeling greatly influenced German Expressionism in the early 20th century. While Ashes is not currently on view to the public, its intense colors and mysterious subject matter demonstrate why Edvard Munch continues to be recognized as one of the most influential artists of modern times.