Horse Team 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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Horse Team is an oil on canvas masterpiece and one of the late works of Edvard Munch. Painted in 1919, the canvas is found in the National Gallery Museum in Oslo, Norway. The painting's theme is agriculture and it comprises both animal and human elements.

The artist included 2 horses working the field with a plough and a human coordinating them. The human element is contoured as a mannequin form, which stands at a distance from the ploughing horses. The painting is rich in autumn colours and vibrates the harvest season. The mellow but dynamic painting is part of the expressionism period and sets the tone for Edvard Munch's Galloping Horse painting. The artist reveals a landscape including a field with a forest in the background. You'll notice three live elements such as the two horses and the human. The dynamics of the masterpiece are highlighted by the two working horses, who're dragging a plough through the field. The action takes place in autumn, when colours such as reds, yellows, and brown dominate.

The horses are painted in contrasting colours, which is a Munchian motif. They also seem to pull away from one another. The two effects deliver an intense tension to the masterpiece. The human offers a sense of mutual control as he works closely and in harmony with the two horses. The subject of the painting is reflected by all the elements. The short, fast, and strong brush strokes create a real record of the activity. The field feels tangible and offers the working space for the horses and the human. You'll notice a contrast between the stillness of nature and the hard work and effort put in by the horses. Although the human seems to just be supervising the horses, he also acts as a mediator between the two. As they pull in opposite directions, the human brings the horses together to work hard and deliver the best results. Harmony, balance, and peace dominate the Horse Team painting.

Harvesting is a team effort and requires perseverance, consistency, and strength. The human manages to bring the two powerful horses together and allows them to work as a team. Both horses hold one leg up to express they're pulling in opposite directions. Their heads are also pointing vigorously in opposite directions. Through Horse Team, Edvard Munch manages to highlight the strong connection between nature's resources and the live creatures. The artist creates a tension between the working animals, which only the human can overcome. He brings the two beasts together and guides them through the field. The human controls the horses and makes them work as a team. As a precursor of the Galloping Horses masterpiece, Horse Team is static in depth but dynamic, overall.