Vincent van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh

Who was Vincent van Gogh?

Born on March 30, 1853, in Groot-Zundert, Netherlands, Van Gogh became one of the most famous artists in history. He was also one of the most influential. His work had a huge impact on 20th-century art, most notably Expressionism, Fauvism and German Expressionism. A largely self-taught artist with an intense personality and an impulsive nature, Van Gogh learned about art from independent study and through his work as an art dealer. During the 1880s he began to try his hand at painting with little success. After moving to Paris in 1886 he finally got serious about his work, producing more than 200 paintings in just over two years. His work did not gain much recognition during his lifetime; he only sold one painting during his lifetime (at a price of 400 francs) and barely more during his lifetime (at prices ranging from 600-900 francs) a long way from the prices commanded by Picasso or Monet.

Van Gogh’s Early Life and Family

He was sickly as a child and seemed to be too delicate for the rough life on the farm. He enjoyed nature more than working with his father on the farm, and his mother thought he had artistic talent. He grew up in a tiny village near Nuenen, which is now part of the Netherlands but was then one of the poorest areas in Europe. Van Gogh's family had an emotional impact on him. His father was involved in a number of domestic disputes, and his parents separated when van Gogh was 10 years old. His younger brother, Theo, would become an artist like Vincent; they remained close throughout their lives. His mother continued to have an influence on him as he grew older. His great love of nature came from her, as well as his love of drawing and watercolors. She died when he was only 12 years old. In 1869 Van Gogh went to The Hague to study art at the Academy under Anton Mauve and his younger brother, Louis. Three years later he moved to Brussels to study at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts under Willem Roelofs, a friend of Mauve's who pushed Van Gogh toward painting actual people rather than idealized or historical subjects

Did you know this about Theo van Gogh

After training as an art dealer, Theo moved to Paris, where he opened his own gallery. In Paris he met the Impressionist artist Paul Gauguin, who became a close friend. Theo told Gauguin about his brother, Vincent. As a result, three days after Vincent arrived in Paris, Theo invited him to stay with him and his wife, Johanna. Vincent was an amateur artist himself. He had no formal training but was inspired by the modern paintings of Edgar Degas, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, and other Post-Impressionist artists. It's unclear how well Theo understood his brother's thoughts and feelings on religion but he respected them enough to withdraw from the family business in order to support Vincent's religious artworks. Theo had a small part in Vincent's death when he convinced his brother to take care of his last painting The Potato Eaters before leaving for France. Even after Vincent's death Theo continued to help his family financially. He also arranged for the publication of some of Vincent's written works. The letters provide important insights into the artist's life.

Understand what led Vincent to paint

Vincent van Gogh painted his famous Starry Night after prolonged exposure to the elements. For several years, Van Gogh worked hard to support himself, but he was unsuccessful. He then took up preaching in the countryside around The Hague, where he lived with his brother, who was an art dealer. However, he soon gave up preaching and became a full-time artist. Because Van Gogh's work wasn't selling well, his brother suggested that he try painting in the style of the Dutch painter Rembrandt. For his next project, Van Gogh chose to paint several views of The Hague at night. He did not like the city much; it was too busy for him and very industrial. He painted quickly and completed several paintings in one week's time. Van Gogh used thick brush strokes and bright colors to demonstrate his state of mind rather than trying to create an accurate copy of what he saw. His paintings reflect his emotions on the canvas, just as they did on the outside world.

The Secret Behind Vincent van Gogh's Mind-Blowing Paintings

Vincent van Gogh is one of the most celebrated artists in history. His paintings have been dissected and analyzed for over a century, but few people know the true secret behind the artist's masterpieces. Vincent van Gogh left behind a body of work that is nothing short of remarkable. In his short career as a painter he created an astonishing number of works, including more than 800 oil paintings, 1,100 watercolors, and 1,300 drawings. He also produced more than 100 lithographs and wood engravings. Vincent van Gogh's art has been the subject of countless studies, papers and books – but there is still much that we don't know about him. Art historians have argued for years about Vincent van Gogh's artistic techniques. How did he create such beautiful paintings? What was his technique? Some believed it was his use of color scheme and color contrast; others said it was his bold brush strokes; some thought it was his curious use of perspective; others said it was his unique choice of subjects. But all these theories fell short: Vincent van Gogh's paintings were so much more than just color scheme and brush strokes. The most important thing you should know about van Gogh's work is that he didn't paint with his eyes. He painted with his mind. This is an almost unbelievable fact, but it can be proven by all of the letters he wrote to his brother Theo. In every letter, he asked Theo for more colors of paint, because they were the tools of his trade.  (If you are interested in reading these letters, I have included some links below). Van Gogh was essentially self-taught in painting, and he didn't have any formal training. He started this career in 1881 when he was 27 years old, so it is safe to say that he learned everything on his own. But what makes him so special? He learned how to use colors in a way that no one else had ever done before him (or has done since then). Van Gogh was able to create an almost "alive" looking impression in his paintings. By using certain colors together, and mixing them with white paint instead of black paint, he was able to capture the essence of life itself on canvas.
 

The last period in Van Gogh’s life and his final days.

Vincent van Gogh was a Dutch Post-Impressionist painter whose work, notable for its rough beauty, emotional honesty and bold color, had a far-reaching influence on 20th-century art. He produced all of his works during a ten-year period in which his brother Theo was an art dealer in Paris. The two worked together and supported each other throughout this period. In 1886 the brothers decided to expand their business by taking over the recently vacated shop of paint manufacturers Eugène Siberdt and Marie Pilet in The Hague. As they were short of money, they took up a loan from their mother as well as borrowing from Theo’s friend Eugène Boch, a successful Belgian art dealer who was willing to offer financial assistance to the struggling artists. The two worked together and supported each other throughout this period. In 1886 the brothers decided to expand their business by taking over the recently vacated shop of paint manufacturers Eugène Siberdt and Marie Pilet in The Hague. As they were short of money, they took up a loan from their mother as well as borrowing from Theo’s friend Eugène Boch, a successful Belgian art dealer who was willing to offer financial assistance to the struggling artists. Van Gogh died on July 29, 1890, at the age of 37 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound; he had sold only one painting. He was buried in the municipal cemetery of Auvers-sur-Oise. Theo van Gogh had died six months earlier on May 26 after a long illness, and his brother's death impacted many people: Vincent Willem van Gogh fell into a deep depression, and his work during that period was among his least well received.

What happened to van Gogh's work?

Van Gogh's work was only appreciated after his death by the French art critic Albert Aurier, who wrote an article about van Gogh in which he called him "a genius". Van Gogh died at the age of 37. Only one of his paintings was sold during his lifetime, and that was by a friend. The rest were either given away or rejected. His fame did not take off until after his death in 1890, when he had exhibitions in Paris and Amsterdam. The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is one of the largest museums in the world dedicated to a single artist, with over 200 paintings. His famous painting Sunflowers was painted when he lived in Arles, France, in 1888. He spent about 10 days making this piece. It took him 4 hours to draw it and two days to paint it. His brother Theo thought that this painting was the best thing Vincent had ever made, but he said it was too dark for people to see properly. This is why Vincent started painting brighter colors after this painting.

Oil painting reproduction Vincent van Gogh

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