|Nationalmusei utställningskatalog, 663
Rarely does art provoke such strong reactions as when it challenges prevailing norms and taboos. When Julius Kronberg’s painting “Nymph and Fauns” was exhibited in 1876 at the newly-built Nationalmuseum, the queues stretched all the way to Grand Hôtel. Many came to be outraged by the subject matter – a depraved slut, who shamelessly exposed her body to two nefarious rascals. But the press coverage also included one young critic, August Strindberg, who praised the work for its unusual and bold colours.
In the USA half a century earlier, the Swedish painter Adolf Ulrik Wertmüller had earned his living by exhibiting a version of “Danaë and the Shower of Gold” that was considered to be extremely daring at the time, to a paying audience in Philadelphia.
If you want to know more about how attitudes to lust, vice and virtue have changed in art from the 16th century to the present day, this book offers insightful reading and many illustrations.
Authors: Eva-Lena Bergström, Carina Burman, Ulf Cederlöf, Karin Hassan Jansson, Magnus Olausson, Karin Sidén and Solfrid Söderlind.
This book was published in conjunction with the exhibition “Lust & Vice”, Nationalmuseum 24 March – 14 August 2011.