Lithograph printed in black on medium thin cream paper
Sheet: 476x635 mm Image: 292x451 mm
Signed in pencil lower right: Edv Munch
Auctioned Wednesday December 12 2018 at 19:30
NOK 200,000–300,000 USD 23,500–35,300 EUR 20,600–30,900
LITERATURE: Arne Eggum: Edvard Munch The Frieze of Life from Painting to Graphic Art Love – Angst – Death, Oslo 2000.
… Also in the lithograph “The Kiss of Death” … Munch has used the characteristic Madonna face. The print was made as an illustration for Strindberg’s one-acter “Samum”, published in Quickborn in 1898. The lithograph illustrates the scene in which the Arab priestess Biskra holds up the skull to the man and suggests he should believe he is seeing himself in a mirror as dead, an experience which leads to his actual death. The title “Samum” refers to an extremely perilous desert storm which is traditionally symbolised by a harpy (the body of a bird of prey with the head of a woman), and Munch uses the Harpy motif as a vignette for this tale so typical of Strindberg, where in the head of the harpy we once again recognise the Madonna’s features. P. 203.