The blue kitchen
The blue kitchen
About the original:
Ludvig Karsten came under Edvard Munch's influence early on. He admired Munch's apparently free and expressive technique and bold colours, especially the way the older master had developed his painting in the years after 1900. Eventually, Karsten oriented himself towards French contemporary painting, where the impulses from Cézanne's pictorial structures and the color explosions of the younger Fauvists gave the "colourist" Completely new challenges. A stay at Matisse's academy was also included. Unlike most other Norwegian Matisse students, Karsten wanted to maintain the visual realities of the subject. The light formulated in colour, as it could be experienced in front of simple motifs in installations and interiors, became his specialty.
The blue kitchen is Karsten's first – and perhaps best – example of an arrangement in backlight. One early morning he perceived this motive. The light that seeps in through the panes is still dim and cold. He has looked at the simple arrangement on the table in front of the window and seen how the dawning day gave the objects color and shape. The light gave the flower pot on the windowsill a faint reddish glow in its still night-black shadow before it penetrated further into the dim kitchen. There it was caught by plates and cup holders before it danced on in restless shifts of blue shades.
The picture was painted in Copenhagen and was bought by Karsten's Danish patron, Christian Tetzen-Lund. When the picture was shown at the Autumn Exhibition in 1913 and the National Gallery wanted to acquire it, the collector let the purchase go through again.
Text: Nils Messel
Other titles: The Blue Kitchen (ENG)
Material and technique: Oil on canvas
53 x 68 cm
532 - Visual arts
Acquisition: Purchased 1913
Inventory no.: NG.M.01507
Part of exhibition: Art 3. Works from the collection 1814-1950, 2007 - 2011
The dance of life. The collection from antiquity to 1950, 2011 - 2019
Registration level: Single object
Owner and collection: The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Visual Art Collections
Photo: Lathion, Jacques