PAUL VINCENT VAN GOGH

1853-1890

Paul Vincent van Gogh was born on March 30th, 1853, at Zundert in the Netherlands. He was born into an upper middle class family and drew quite abit as a young boy. As a child, Van Gogh was not like any other young boy. He was very serious about whatever he did, he wasn't shy yet he was quiet, and he also gave everything that he did great thought. However, these characteristics made him very strange to others.

 

His father, Theodorus van Gogh, was a pastor in the Dutch Reformed Community and his Mother’s name was Anna Cornelia Carbentus. Vincent was the oldest child out of five siblings, two brothers and three sisters. An interesting fact is that before Vincent was born, his father and mother were to have a baby boy but he passed away before birth. This leads to how Vincent acted in his youth and older ages because some biographers say that Vincent thought that he was not truly wanted by his parents, instead, he felt like a replacement for his older brother who died.

 

As Vincent was a young teen, he attended a boarding school where creativity, especially impressionism, did not belong. No one supported his works and he felt very lonesome, although his mother did support him to be a painter as a boy. He was away from his parents, no one appreciate his sense of art, therefore, growing up as a strong man was quite hard for him.

 

              Vincent van Gogh is considered one of the greatest, influential, and most important Post-Impressionists, if with many others, in the 20th century. He was a Dutch artist who constructed works such as portraits, self-portraits, landscapes, and still-lives.

It is said that out of all the other Post-Impressionists painters, Vincent van Gogh is a game changer all because of how his paintings showed certain expressions from his color, form, and brushstrokes.

 

But what exactly is Post-Impressionism?

Post-Impressionism is a French Art Movement in which the similarities of the Impressionist movement surround each work. It just all depends on how each artist responds to it.

 

After boarding school and his basic education, he worked for a business which consisted of art dealers. With this experience, he traveled to Paris and London but he became depressed while he was there. Therefore, here in his late twenties is where he began to paint.

               

 As a boy and being lost in finding his identity, he found peace in drawing and creating. That is how he was inspired. But it wasn’t until the last two years of his life where he produced his most famous and renown works. In just a little over a decade or so, he created more than 2,100 pieces of art, which included 810 oil paintings and more than 1,300 watercolors, drawings, sketches, and prints. Through all of these works, the colors that he chose expressed how he felt towards the world.

 

Van Gogh was unsuccessful during his lifetime, and was considered a madman and a failure.

 

-  Although he did become famous after he committed suicide

 

-  His reputation grew in the early 20th century as his painting styles were incorporated by the Fauves and German Expressionists.

Van Gogh - "The Starry Night" (late 19C) from Olga's Gallery

                This painting is very famous and obviously has been around for quite a while. Here we see another night time painting yet this one has much greater detail. The contrast and flow of the colors are outstanding, they create a movement in this picture that make one’s eyes flow from all points of the picture. The night sky with the beautiful stars make the village underneath seem so peaceful and innocent in the night.

Van Gogh - "The Night Cafe" (late 19C) from Olga's Gallery

                In this wonderful oil painting, the lighting in the room gives off creative energy that flows from each corner. Also, the vibrant colors and lighting creates a type of flowing energy as well. The wild contrasting and vivid colors bring it to life. The green ceiling, the walls are wonderfully and smoothly painted red, and the open floor all play into part as to where it makes whoever looking at this painting feel as if the billiard table is near them. The perspective of this painting has everything in the picture leaning down as if this café is open to everyone.

Van Gogh – “A Wheatfield with Cypresses” (late 19C) from Metropolitan Museum of Art

                This oil painting constructs a windy day on a Wheatfield. Van Gogh says that this painting is his best summer painting as well. In a letter to his brother, Theo, written on 2 July 1889, Vincent described the painting: "I have a canvas of cypresses with some ears of wheat, some poppies, a blue sky like a piece of Scotch plaid; the former painted with a thick impasto like the Monticello’s, and the wheat field in the sun, which represents the extreme heat, very thick too" (National Gallery).

Van Gogh - "Irises" (late 19C) from Olga's Gallery

                This seems to be the most special painting of Van Gogh because he painted this beautiful work of art while he was in asylum. Which is crazy because most people would think that he would be at his all-time depression mode but here, there is only beautifully structured flowers and blossoms that he has placed and studied at his own accord. In this creation, there is such vivid color being displayed which gives off a feeling of sunshine glowing on the colorful plants, giving them life.

 

Van Gogh – “Self Portrait” (late 19C) from Musee d’Orsay Paris

                Van Gogh truly displays his deep feelings with his facial expression is this portrait. He is very serious, calm, and collected. His eyes are constructed widely, and each hair on his head has intricate detail. The background really brings out his dark hair and his suit with its contrast of many bright and pastel colors.

Van Gogh – “The Yellow House” (late 19C) from Van Gogh Museum

                This house is in France, and the reason Van Gogh painted it was because he rented four rooms in it. He used the two most large rooms as a studio to do his work and he also occupied the kitchen as well. Also, the building connected to the left of the house with the pink curtain above the door, was a restaurant the Van Gogh stated that he receives his meals from. So, this painting was quite special to him because of these memories. 

 

 

Van Gogh – “Starry Night Over the Rhone” (late 19C) from Musee d’Orsay Paris

                I love this painting because of the calming night vibes that it gives off. The reflection of the bridge creates a real feeling as if you are standing in the painting looking out at the still waters. It is almost a getaway, where a peaceful state of mind can be created. This being an oil painting really allows it to become a real-life portrait.

 

Van Gogh – “Almond Blossom” (late 19C) from Van Gogh Museum

                The main reason I love this painting is because of the simple blue background. After looking at all Van Gogh’s backgrounds made up many vivid and bright colors, it is warming to see just a light blue background with beautiful blossoms placed on top. The contrasted background from being a light blue and then becoming darker as it gets closer to the branch, I think Gogh really studied that because it truly makes the branch stick out more in a vivid way.

https://www.google.com/culturalinstitute/beta/u/0/entity/m07_m2?hl=en

 

https://www.moma.org/calendar/exhibitions/1219?locale=en

 

https://www.moma.org/artists/2206?locale=en

 

https://www.google.com/culturalinstitute/beta/u/0/partner/van-gogh-museum?hl=en

 

http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/436535

 

http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/436528

 

WORKS CITED