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Christian Krohg


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(b Aker, nr. Christiania [now Oslo], 13 Aug. 1852; d Oslo, 16 Oct. 1925).

Norwegian painter, active mainly in Christiania/Oslo, although he had a lengthy stay in Paris from 1902 to 1909. He took his subjects mainly from ordinary life—often from its sombre or unsavoury aspects. In particular, he is well known for his paintings of prostitutes, and he wrote a controversial novel on the same subject (Albertine, 1886). His work was often attacked by conservative critics, but his vigorous and forthright tackling of modern issues made him a hero to many Norwegian artists of a younger generation, most notably Munch. His son Per Krohg (b Asgardstrand, 18 June 1889; d Oslo, 3 Mar. 1965) was also a painter. In his early work he specialized in scenes of city life, using bright Fauvist colours (he studied under Matisse in Paris) and exaggerated gestures that sometimes border on caricature (Kiki of Montparnasse, 1928, NG, Oslo). From about 1930, however, his style became more naturalistic and he worked mainly as a muralist, decorating many public buildings, particularly in Oslo. Father and son both held the post of director of the Academy of Fine Arts in Oslo, Christian from 1909 until his death, Per from 1955 to 1958.

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