Girl Looking out the Window Edvard Munch Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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Girl Looking out the Window is an oil on canvas painting painted by Edvard Munch in 1893. The image portrays a scene of a young girl in her nightgown standing in a very dark room staring out the window in the dead of night.

The artwork has a size of 96.5cm x65.4cm (38 × 25 3/4 in). The girl is gazing out at the city. The floor has a very steep angle, and the room is covered by deep shadows that wipe out everything in the place; the only thing remaining visible is the hint of a piece of furniture at the lower right. This creates a creepy and very mysterious scene. The artists' brushwork and colour choices bring to mind a feeling of misery and expectation.

By separating the interior from the outside world, the window acts as a symbolic barrier. Edvard seeks to create a sense of suspense since the viewers cannot see the expressions on the girl's face or what she is keenly observing outside the window. This complicates and deepens the sense of mystery. The main subject in the image is the girl looking out the window; she captures the viewers' attention as they try to figure out what she is gazing at out the window, the reason for staring outside, if she is happy or sad, and her mood. Trying to figure out the unknown from the painting is what makes it exciting. The current location of the panting is at the Art Institute of Chicago.

During his starting years, Munch experimented with many artistic styles in his paintings, which included impressionism and naturalism. After a while, munch concluded that impressionism did not give the kind of expression he wanted. He termed superficial as he felt the need to explore deeper into emotions and expressive energy. After travelling to France, Munch moved away from depicting calm naturalistic images to art infused with emotional expressions and compositional daring.

Munch showed his interest at an early age. His early drawings depicted interiors, landscapes, and sometimes individual objects. He was exposed to other artists at the newly formed Art Association at the age of 13. He admired most of the work of the Norwegian landscape school. Later on, much even left the technical college where he studied engineering to become a painter, something which did not go well with the father. He enrolled at the royal school of art and design of Kristiania to learn more, and it is where he started experimenting with various styles.