Artist of the moment….Vincent Van Gogh…..Part 1

First off, the great news is that this exhibit of Vincent Van Gogh opens in a few days!   I haven’t been so excited to see an exhibit here since Frederic Remington’s Colors of Night was in Denver a few years back. The show is called Becoming Van Gogh and runs from October 21, 2012 until January 20, 2013. Here is a link to the museums preview of the show:

Vincent Van Gogh was born in 1853. As a child and young adult he was often drawing. His father was a  minister in the Dutch Reform Church. He grew up attending catholic school and was taught with other siblings by a governess.  In retrospect, Van Gogh said his own childhood was dull and gloomy. Whilst growing up the artist thought about becoming a minister like his father.

As a young man the artist was employed by art dealers. He was able to travel to the large and en vogue cities of the day such as the Hague, London, Paris, and London. He lived in the Hague, Netherlands in 1869 and was transfered to London, England in 1873. His brother Theo’s wife noted that it was this year that Van Gogh was his happiest in life. He was successful in his work, earning at the age of twenty more income than his father.

In a pattern that was to repeat itself many times in his life, he told his landlord’s daughter  he was madly in love with her. She rejected him. He would be mentally unfit and awkward for a long while after the rejection took place. In the end he was moved from London to Paris, France. At this location Van Gogh didn’t like the fact art was treated as another commodity and made no attempt to hide it from customers. The art dealer job that he so enjoyed, was not working out for his employers at all and Van Gogh was fired  from his job as art dealer in 1876.

It was not until the artist was in his thirties that he started to paint. His palette consisted of somber and earthy tones, the exact opposite for what he became famous for. His spectacular brush work and bold use of color was developed after spending time in south of France, in cities like Arles.

To get further insight into the mind of Van Gogh, we are lucky to have several hundred of the  letters that the brothers exchanged with each other from the years of 1872 until 1890. More than 600 are known from Vincent writing to Theo. More than 40 are known to be from Theo writing to Vincent.

A short clip showing some art work of Vincents.

This is  going to be another long post like Georgia Okeefe and Ansel Adams so I have decided to break it down into two parts!

Imagine and Create!


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