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Carl Larsson: how a loved and popular painter became lost in controversy

Carl Larsson: how a loved and popular painter became lost in controversy

The Eclectic Light Company

A century ago, in 1915, much of Europe was engaged in one of the greatest and most senseless slaughters in recorded history. Poison gas had been used in the Second Battle of Ypres, and the trenches were filling with corpses. Around half a million troops died on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey.

Those who could still care about art were being shocked by Cubists such as Picasso, Braque, and Juan Gris, and developments by Jean Metzinger, Albert Gleizes, and Robert Delaunay.

Nordic art

The Nordic countries managed to remain neutral, but British and German naval activity in the Baltic was a reminder that the war was not far away. Nordic culture and politics were developing increasingly independently: in Finland the publication of the Kalevala in 1835-49 inspired Akseli Gallen-Kallela‘s spectacular Aino Triptych (1891), and Finland finally achieved independence from being an autonomous Grand Duchy in the Russian Empire in…

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