The Yellow Log, 1911-12 by Edvard Munch

At Kragero Munch painted landscapes in the forests of spruces and pines in the neighborhood and on the nearby islands. Compared to his art nouveau-influenced woodland scenes of the turn of the century, this painting is relatively naturalistic, though colors have been intensified for expressionistic effect, especially the vivid yellow of the logs and the purple trees, doubtless to contrast life and death. The main yellow 'log' is in fact virtually an entire tree trunk stripped of its bark, bits of which in varied colors lie around it. Seen in perspective, its length seems exaggerated by the low eye level and short line of sight, and the great height of the tree when it lived, its 'Gothic' striving toward heaven, is emphasized by its pointing to the base of the tallest tree in the distance. The truncating of the tree in the extreme foreground by the top and bottom edges of the picture plane, indicating space continuing towards us, and the implied recession of the trees beyond both side borders, increase the already great sense of extension imparted by the foreshortened 'yellow log.' The effect of all this is to make the forest seem endless in all directions.