Oil on panel
“Six Plays by Henrik Ibsen”
With an Introduction and Notes by Martin Puchner
Ibsen is the playwright who dared more than any of his contemporary writers to do away with old proprieties, to invent new forms, to break with the past. At the same time, however, his plays are everywhere haunted by this past; even as they announce their desire to escape the past, it always returns – for example, in the form of the character’s childhood and formative experiences. Ibsen’s plays are psychological plays in that they proceed by analyzing characters, by taking them apart layer by layer until these characters’ actions are fully explained.