wrote on Feb 9, 2003:
I have been
an admirer of Expressionism for years and have
written research papers on it. I am profoundly
moved by this
work because of how I can relate to it. This
picture in particular struck me as I studied
it, because it could
almost be like a portrait of me... I suffer
from depression and have lived in emotional
anguish since important people
have passed from my life... there have been
countless days in my life I have found myself
alone, with a bottle
of something, decided to drink two, and woke
up the next morning, not remembering how I
got to the bed... all
sprawled out. Usually there's still some left
in the glass I couldn't drink before I passed
out. People ask
why anyone would want to destroy themselves
like this? To forget... numb the pain... and
as you look at the
painting, a part of you has to ask how such
a pretty girl could do that to herself? When
you feel no one else
cares, neither do you, so nothing matters.
Beauty can be lethal.
wrote on Nov 5, 2001:
it as bad as you say?
I do seem to disagree with a lot of the comments that have been
put forth on this page. Although she may seem that she has been
raped, or taken advantage of, maybe it was just 'the day after'
a party. So many people may sit at home and have a little drink
to themselves, have loads of fun, and then when the morning comes,
it is not going to matter how they are lying on the bed, their
head is throbbing, and their legs feel like they are going to
drop off. When Edvard did this painting, maybe it was after a
passionate night 'THEY' had together. As her beautiful body lay
there, how could you resist painting such a relaxed figure?
on Aug 14, 2001:
I agree with the previous writer. [see comment from
May 22] This painting immediately struck me as disturbing.
Something happened that had nothing to do with "silky smooth hair"
or languorous sensuality. She looks like she could be drugged
or passed out. There is no cozy romance here, no hint of satisfaction
on her part. I get the feeling that she has always been alone...
even though there are clues that point to another's presence (two
glasses, her undone blouse). She may have been with someone the
night before but the tone of sadness in the painting and the lack
of satisfaction hinted at by the her awkward position on the bed
and her clothed state make me think, as the other writer, that
she is the victim of someone consuming her rather than the participant.
There is something fatalistic about her relaxed state, too, that
is interesting. She knew the person she was with. It could have
been a long-time lover or husband... but this is definitely "The
Day After" a violation or rape.
wrote on Jul 11, 2001:
The title seems to imply that something big happened the day before.
And when looking at the painting it seems to be that the girl
is resting, thinking back on what she has done. Although it may
seem that it is the morning after, it doesn't necessarily have
to be. She is dressed and just didn't bother to make up her bed
and the wine bottles on the table seem to suggest that she may
have tried to drown her sorrows, which may explain the look on
wrote on May 22, 2001:
I'm with Julie [see comment from Apr 5],
although I don't think it's a difference in male/female perspective.
I'm a guy, but I immediately see on the table the key to understanding
this picture. It seems that there was an alcohol-fueled evening
of lust, all-too-quickly followed by a morning of exhaustion,
depression, and pain. You'll notice there's no male figure - he's
abandoned his prize after having obtained his gratification and
satisfaction. I see no hint of a future here, except exactly more
of the shallow same. I almost feel like apologizing...
wrote on May 22, 2001:
The moment I saw this painting I thought that she was dead. It
was the reaction to seeing a body in such a position, as if she
had been drugged and raped. It is thoroughly disturbing to me,
even if the woman is a beautiful one. The title "The Day After"
obviously connotates that of the day after having sex, but still,
somehow it caught my attention in a painful way where it seemed
as if this woman were just a doll flung onto the bed. The empty
bottles of alcohol adds to the feeling of falsity because they
had been drunk.
on May 21, 2001:
agree with Julie
[see comment from Apr 5] Enough said. I think
the rest of you all need to reevaluate the contents of the painting.
Three aspects of this painting tell me this: 1) the two glasses
on the table - one completely empty and one half-empty (that's
flag one); 2) her position on the bed implies she is passed out;
this is hardly a comfortable or sensual position to be in; she
is oblivious to her condition; 3) she is fully clothed, her legs
are spread and her bosom is open. I receive very violent depictions
from this painting. It seems to me this could be a subtle depiction
of date rape.
on May 4, 2001:
I'm with Julie [see comment from Apr 5] -
this painting is not about sensuality, about staring at a beautiful
woman! This woman has been raped or violated and abandoned...
she has been drinking, she is passed out, she is about to wake
up to the worst day of her life... think about the phrase "the
day after" what does that mean, colloquially? NOT GOOD THINGS!
wrote on Apr 5, 2001:
Is it just me...?
Is it just me, or is this painting more disturbing than pleasing?
Maybe it's because I'm a woman. I notice that the comments from
men focus on the sensuality and calm in the painting, while the
instant I saw this image, I thought of pain and disappointment.
The title 'The Day After' implies to me the ideas of disappointed
love, crossed boundaries, and broken expectations. It seems that
this woman is weak, not calm... crushed, not content. The mood
of the painting is not casual and lingering, but rather harmful
and violating. What has happened the night before? Do men and
women tend to view such scenes so differently?
wrote on Mar 18, 2001:
It is just divine
With her head laying back, her hair draping over the side of the
bed, showing its softness and smoothness, just by looking at this
painting relates to things in ones own life, going to bed with
a women, then waking up and just staring at the beauty of her
wrote on Feb 8, 2001:
Desperation intermingled with a deep sensual quality
This painting is full of sensuality and has a feel of desperation
about it. As much as I sense the desperation she seems to be feeling,
I can reconcile with the inner peace the woman is feeling as she
seems to be lost in her sleep. Perhaps an escape from a reality
she cannot accept. The feelings here are so sexual or perhaps
Munch just found women to be more sensuous when, they looked vulnerable.
Teichman wrote on Jan 22, 2001:
Her black hair, silky smooth, dreamy as the night. Soft sensuous
lips, deep in thought. Her hair halfway between the floor and
her bed. Her blouse exposing half of her breasts, her hand, half
closed. The whiskey glass half empty. Half of the table is shown.
The painting foretells of future nights together, with expectations
and longings, yet to be imagined and fulfilled. The background
is not too dark and not too light, everything is showing a puzzle
Great Modern Masters:
The Day After, 1894-5
Oil on canvas
115 x 152 cm