Munch. There are Worlds Within Us

This autumn Bergen will be the world’s “Munch-capital”. The exhibition “Edvard Munch. There are Worlds Within Us” is a rare meeting of four of the largest Munch collections in the world.   

Edvard Munch (1863–1944) is the artist behind some of the world’s most famous pictures. He is considered one of the first and greatest exponents of expressionism, a direction that emphasised the expression of our inner states. This September KODE launches two major exhibitions on Munch. 

The exhibition “Edvard Munch. There are Worlds Within Us” is a rare meeting of four of the largest Munch collections in the world. The exhibition displays near 100 paintings and works on paper on loan from the Munch Museum, the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, and the Gundersen Collection as well as works from KODE's own Munch-collection.

A parallel exhibition, “The Experimental Self. Edvard Munch’s photography” will be presented in KODE Rasmus Meyer Colleciton. This exhibition looks at Munch’s exploration of photography and film as an artistic medium. The two exhibitions presents a golden opportunity to explore the breadth of Munch’s artistic oeuvre – from paintings and prints to photography.

The cycle of life 

"Nothing is small nothing is great – there are Worlds within us. Small things form part of the large. Large things form part of the small – A drop of blood is a Universe with Suns at its centre and Planet. The ocean is a drop. A small part of a Body." Edvard Munch, undated note

The exhibition “Edvard Munch. There are Worlds Within Us” presents a broad selection of paintings and prints in the recently renovated halls of the KODE Museum’s Stenersen building, KODE 2. 

In all his art, Munch explored connections within life and nature – the great in the small, the small in the great. One of the main themes of the exhibition is the tensions between our inner world of emotional and mental states and the framework provided by the outer world. 

Another major theme is Munch’s preoccupation with phases and cycles. In the quote above, Munch gives poetic expression to a view of the universe that sees circularity and eternal cycles on every level of existence.  Similarly, each individual work that Munch created is closely embedded in his broader production. It represents an inconclusive statement in an ongoing exploration of themes. 

Design reflecting the artist's thoughts 

The open form of the exhibition offers a spatial interpretation of this reciprocal interplay in Munch’s art between the internal and the external, intimacy and distance, part and whole. Without a fixed beginning or end, it reflects the artist’s thoughts on the cycle of life and the inconclusive artwork. 

“Edvard Munch. There are Worlds Within Us” is curated by Line Daatland, Director of Collections and Exhibitions at KODE and Frode Sandvik, curator at KODE. Exhibition design is by Bård Lie Thorbjørnsen.  

The photo exhibition is realized as a collaboration with the Munch Museum and The American-Scandinavian Foundation and curated by the American Munch researcher Patricia Berman. 

The exhibitions will be at display in KODE 2 and KODE 3 until January 19th 2020. 

Extended Opening hours – Munch 

KODE 2 – "There are Worlds Whitin Us"
Monday closed
Tuesday–Friday 11.00–20.00
Saturday–Sunday 11.00–20.00

KODE 3 – "Edvard Munch's Photography"
Monday closed
Tues, Wedn, Frid: 11.00–16.00
Thursday: 11.00–20.00
Saturday–Sunday 11.00–17.00

Last opening day: Sunday 19 January.


  • 6 Sep 2019 to 19 Jan 2020
  • Kode 2
  • 130,- / 90,- / 0,- *

* Adults: NOK 130, Students: NOK 90, Bergen Card: NOK 90, Free admission for children and KODE members. The ticket gives admission to all exhibitions at KODE for two days