Storehouse in Jølster

undefined undefined undefined, 1902 - 1905, 660 x 990 mm

Nasjonalmuseet for kunst, arkitektur og design

A storehouse stands at the centre of the picture on a foundation of thick, coarsely hewn timber posts. It is painted in foreshortened perspective and placed in the middle of a cluster of old farm buildings. The wood exterior is wet, and reflects the daylight in shades of silver-grey and blue. Beneath the sod roof we can see the lining made of birch bark, curling around the cornices and holding the rain out. Between the buildings, a birch tree glows in yellow tones, while the branches of the leafless rowan hang, weighed down by the red berries. The colours evoke the smell of dampness and decay, and are harbingers of autumn’s decomposition. 

Storehouse in Jølster depicts part of the farmyard at the Ålhus parsonage in Jølster. Klipperfossen (Kleberfossen), which can be seen cascading down the mountainside on the left, is a familiar landmark, along with the mountain Grøneneven, the snow-clad Blåfjellet in the middle, and Hegrenesfjellet to the right. Although the established and descriptive title points to the characteristic storehouse as the main subject of the painting, the title that Astrup used in the exhibition in 1905 is worth mentioning: “Dismal Autumn Day”. This brings into focus the atmosphere and the painterly execution of the landscape. The atmosphere is chiefly defined by the heavy, cold rainy day, and the colour scheme creates a discordant and ambivalent expression in the work. The buildings in the farmyard look like mute beings in the raw landscape. The doors are closed, and the peepholes are few, small and dark. The motif has clear references to Farmyard in Jølster (K25; 1902), Rainy Weather Atmosphere (K73; 1902–1908) and Autumn Rain in a Mountain Village (K188; 1901), which all revolve around the same theme of rainy weather.

Storehouse in Jølster was exhibited in Astrup’s first solo exhibition, which was housed in Blomqvist Art Dealers in Kristiania (Oslo) in April 1905. Although the artist did not consider the picture one of his best in the exhibition, it received particular attention from the critics. The painting was purchased by his colleague Eilif Peterssen for 120 kroner. Peterssen even encouraged the painter Gerhard Munthe, who was artistic advisor for the National Gallery, to consider the work for the national museum’s collection. Munthe quickly wrote a recommendation to the administration, emphasising that “The picture is undoubtedly the Expression of what Astrup feels and aspires to, and I know from Experience how likely it is, that Astrup will become removed from the Intimacy, which presently characterises his Art”. The National Gallery approved the acquisition, and Astrup thus became represented in the nation’s art collection at the young age of 25. 

The artist does not write directly about this painting, yet reflects on what he calls “autumn colours” in his notebook Blandede motiver (Miscellaneous Motifs). In one colour composition he juxtaposes nuances of blood red, orange, crimson, a pinkish white and blue with olive-green, yellow, olive-blue and violet. The colours were alternately matt and glossy in order to create an atmospheric effect. Some of the same effect can be traced in this painting. The colour scheme resembles that used in Farmhouse in Jølster (K25) and Autumn Rain in Mountain Village (K188). 


Nikolai Astrup



Eilif Peterssen




1905-4-1 - 1905-4-30

Nikolai Astrup

Kristiania (Oslo)


1928-10-10 - 1928-11-4

Nikolai Astrup. Mindeutstilling




1956-11-2 - 1956

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928




1987-5-23 - 1987-9-30

Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928




2016-5-1 - 2016-5-5

Nikolai Astrup Painting Norway




2016-6-10 - 2016-9-11

Nikolai Astrup Norske Landskap




2016-10-2 - 2017-1-22

Nikolai Astrup: Norwegen. Eine Entdeckung




2021-6-19 - 2021-9-19

Nikolai Astrup: Visions of Norway


2021-10-15 - 2022-1-23

Nikolai Astrup. Rå natur


2022-2-19 - 2022-5-28

Nikolai Astrup. Visioner av norsk natur



1942-4 - 1942-5

Kunst og ukunst




1964-5-4 - 1964-6-6

Jubileumsutstilling 1814–1964




Carey, Frances; Dejardin, Ian A. C.; Stevens, MaryAnne, Painting Norway. Nikolai Astrup (1880–1928). Scala Arts & Heritage Publishers Ltd. London, 2016, 91.

Carey, Frances; Dejardin, Ian A. C.; Stevens, MaryAnne, Painting Norway. Nikolai Astrup (1880–1928). Scala Arts & Heritage Publishers Ltd. London, 2016, 91.

kunstforening, Bergens, Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. Mindeutstilling. A/S John Griegs Boktrykkeri. Bergen, 1928, 19.

Blomquist, C. W., Rekninger. 1905–04–27.

Onsager, Søren, Kunst og ukunst i Nasjonalgalleriet. Oppryddingen april 1942. Det Mallingske Boktrykkeri. Oslo, 1942, 11.

Onsager, Søren, Kunst og ukunst i Nasjonalgalleriet. Oppryddingen april 1942. Det Mallingske Boktrykkeri. Oslo, 1942.

Nasjonalgalleriet, Jubileumsutstilling 1814–1964. [s.n.]. Oslo, 1964, upag.

Konstförbundet, Nordiska, Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. Konstakademien. Stockholm, 1956, 26.

Stiftelsen Modums Blaafarveværk, Nikolai Astrup 1880–1928. [s.n.]. Modum, 1987, 32.

Loge, Øystein, Betrothed to Nature. Det Norske Samlaget. Oslo, 2010, 137, 110, 136, 187, 228.