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Munch's 'The Scream' hits MoMa in New York City

By Adam Reiss, CNN
updated 10:34 AM EDT, Thu October 25, 2012
Edvard Munch's
Edvard Munch's "The Scream" is on display in Manhattan's Museum of Modern Art.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The exhibit opened Wednesday and runs through April 2013
  • The iconic work fetched nearly $120 million at Sotheby's auction house in May
  • The previous record for a Munch work of art tallied just over $38 million

(CNN) -- Art enthusiasts ranging from aficionados to the causal tourist queued up in New York on Wednesday to catch a glimpse of Norwegian artist Edvard Munch's "The Scream," which went on display in Manhattan's Museum of Modern Art for a six-month exhibition.

The exhibit opened Wednesday and runs through April 2013.

"Seeing it in real life is so special," said Julianna Rees, a San Francisco resident who attended the opening.

The iconic work fetched nearly $120 million at Sotheby's auction house in May.

Previously, the most expensive artwork ever sold there was Pablo Picasso's painting "Nude, Green Leaves and Bust," which brought in $106.5 million two years ago.

The previous record for a Munch work of art tallied just over $38 million.

Dubbed "the portrait of a soul" and "the face that launched 1,000 therapists," "The Scream" depicts a distorted human figure -- hands flat against its sunken face, eyes and mouth wide open -- in the foreground of a nightmarish landscape.

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