“…My plan for my life is to make paintings and drawings, as many and as well as I can – then, when my life is over, I hope to depart in no other way than looking back with love and wistfulness and thinking, oh paintings that I would have made!”
– Vincent Van Gogh, 1883.
Vincent Van Gogh had great intensity of purpose. With sheer discipline and iron perseverance every drawing and painting better than the last. The Van Gogh museum’s collection of paintings and drawings is on a permanent loan from the Vincent van Gogh Foundation. Every year, approximately 1.5 million visitors from around the world come to Amsterdam to admire his work- its hard to believe than even Van Gogh himself once despaired the lack of interest his work received.
The Simple Life
It was at the age of 27 than Van Gogh found his true passion- Art. He began to make ‘peasant life’ his main subject. Bear in mind that at a time with increasing industrialization he often admired and preferred the honest, and simple aspects of rural life which primarily revolved around nature.
Flowers in France
In 1885 he moved to Antwerp and explored its surrounding areas such as Paris. He soon found new inspiration in the developing cities. However it was during his time in the south of France, Arles that his new found curiosity with artistic flowering blossomed.
Van Gogh painted 5 versions of a big bunch of sunflowers in a vase or a pot. The first in the august of 1888- when sunflowers are in bloom – and the other 4 later. Using several shades of yellow he achieved a radiant colour harmony.
The Ear Incident
(Probably the reason why you’re still reading this)
In 1888, Van Gogh and his friend, another established painter named Gauguin had a discussion that got out hand. Vincent began to display irrational behaviour by threatening Gauguin with a razor. Later than evening, Vincent made the decision to cut off part of his own left ear, which he then presented to a prostitute. As the days went on, Vincent began to have no memory of the incident at all, so doctors began to question his sanity.
Van Gogh in Numbers
Despite his illness, Van Gogh left behind over 860 paintings, 1,200 drawings and 820 letters. The Van Gogh museum manages the largest and diverse collections of his works in the world: 200 painting, 500 drawings, 4 sketchbooks and almost all his letters.
If ever in Amsterdam, be sure to visit, it’s an experience you will never forget!
‘A consolatory art for distressed hearts’