Vincent Van Gogh has a very interesting life. Although he only became a painter for ten years, he has become one of the most renowned post-impressionist artists (Rewald, 1978, p. 2). His life and his unique style in painting have made him famous after his death. Some scholars identify him to be one of the pioneers of expressionism. Moreover, one can see in his paintings the free-flowing strokes and lines and the vibrant colors of an expressionist. However, he started as a painter who used dull dark colors. It was only when he moved to Paris to join his younger brother did he adopted the impressionist and post-impressionist styles.
By combining these styles, together with modified pointillism, he created his own special style, which no other painter could duplicate. In this exhibit, we give Vincent Van Gogh the honor due his name and the vast contributions he had left to Western art. In Defense of the Title and Theme The most popular and sought after paintings of Van Gogh are those, which he created when he moved to Paris. As he joined his brother in Paris, he was introduced to the vibrant colors of that era since the dull and dark colors he used were often rejected.
This was the beginning of the influence of impressionism on Van Gogh; thus, the exhibit title “Van Gogh in Paris and Beyond: Oil on Canvas” is appropriate. It does not explicitly reveal that the time was when he embraced impressionism. Yet to those who have known the artist, it will be a very clever title. All the paintings included in the exhibition are oil on canvas. Such exclusive selection is to emphasize Van Gogh’s use of colors. Additionally, what works most display the use of colors but oil in canvas?
Van Gogh believes that a painter must be a colorist who has mastered the mixing of colors and hues. He never knew he predicted his own legacy as an artist. The Gallery The location of the exhibition does not need to be in a particular city or country. However, I would like to find interior artists who could duplicate Goupil’s Gallery in The Hague. The Hague was where Van Gogh first worked where he became an art dealer. This is important since this was the first place Van Gogh has dealt with art. The place’s entrance should have a wide door with glass windows on either side.
The windows should cover the whole sidewalls. Inside, there will be two adjacent rooms such that the wide door to the other room is in line with the main entrance. On the walls would be the paintings. The first five will be on the first room; the other five will be on the second room. Since the paintings are all oil on canvas, transportation will not be a problem. The Paintings The selection of the paintings was quite crucial. Van Gogh has done about 900 oil-in-canvas paintings in his artistic career. It was very difficult to pinpoint just ten of these articles.
However, the paintings in the exhibition are chosen in a way that will best describe the author’s personality and artistic style. Thus, the paintings are grouped into two. The first five Van Gogh paintings will be on the first room. These paintings are put together to introduce the life and personality of the artist. The next five will deeply highlight the style and passion the writer has uniquely established. Nude Woman on a Bed (Paris, 1887) This painting of a nude woman is one of only three nude paintings Van Gogh has done. The painting comes first to attract the people into the gallery.
Nude paintings are always a hit to people. In addition, the significance lies on the fact that Van Gogh never had a good relationship with the opposite sex. Women always rejected him (Wilkie, 1990, p. 52). There were times that the woman reciprocates the love; however, the relationships did not last because of opposition from his family (Callow, 1990, p. 132). These experiences could be one of the many factors that sparked his mental illness. The Church at Auvers (France, 1890) This beautiful depiction of the church at Auvers distinctly creates a vivid picture of the literal church.
Van Gogh has always loved churches. His father was a pastor and he was brought up in a very religious family. He wanted to be a missionary who brings evangelization to the poor. In his early life, he pursued a career as a preacher but he failed and was expelled by the villagers (Wilkie, 1990, p. 77). It seems that in all of his endeavors, he always failed. Although he became a great painter, he never saw the fruits of his labor because of his early death. Self-Portrait in front of the Easel (Paris, 1888) Van Gogh is known as one of the few artists who have done various self-portraits.
In this painting, he is depicted with his brush and easel in an attempt to mimic his person. The significant reason why a self-portrait is included in the gallery is that Van Gogh believed that drawing portraits develops the artist’s talent. In spite of this, he only drew self-portraits because he cannot finance models for his portraits (Gayford, 2006, p. 131). Two Peasant Women Digging in Field with Snow (Saint Remy, 1890) This painting was chosen because it depicts the artist’s styles of strokes and revealing his love for the peasants and their lives. He had many works that display the toil that peasants have.
This particular painting was chosen because of the use of curved flowing lines, which is what sets Van Gogh apart from other painters. Pine Tree and Dandelions in the Garden of Saint-Paul Hospital (Saint Remy, 1890) Saint-Paul Hospital in Saint Remy was where Van Gogh spent his last days (Callow, 1990, p. 246). He was sent there due to his deteriorating health and worsening psychiatric illness. During these times, the subjects of his paintings are those of the hospital and the views around it. He didn’t stay long in this place since on July 1890, he shot himself. Interior of a Restaurant (Paris, 1887)
This is the first painting of the second group, which occupies the second room of the gallery. At this point, the paintings mainly speak of the artist’s style and preference in colors. This painting was inspired by the idea of pointillism where the artist paints with multiple dots forming objects, which exhibit a complementary view upon looking from a distance. Nevertheless, there are only a few paintings of this type by Van Gogh because he prefers his style of flowing curving lines devoid of corners and ends. Still Life: Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers (France, 1889) This painting reveals the artists love for flowers especially of sunflowers.
In addition, it presents Van Gogh’s affinity for the vibrant colors of orange and yellow. Examining the painting, one will be awed with the detail that each sunflower presents. Its texture is richly eye-catching to the observer. The Red Vineyard (France, 1888) Even though his paintings cost a fortune nowadays, Van Gogh only sold one painting in his entire lifetime. This painting was The Red Vineyard. Again, we see in this masterpiece that Van Gogh uses his distinguishing colors of red, orange and yellow. He also presents his short strokes of free flowing curves almost distorting the figures he paints.
The depth of the painting also moves the onlooker deeper into the work of art. Daubigny’s Garden (Saint Remy, 1890) Many historians believe that his last painting was Daubigny’s Garden (Hulsker, 1980, p. 483). It is noted that in Van Gogh’s last paintings, there was an increase in the emotions demonstrated as in the case of this painting. Heavy, shorter lines and increased depth with a personal touch revealed his struggle to understand and cope with the challenges in his life. Starry Night (France, 1889) Who doesn’t know the song “Starry, Starry Night”, also known as “Vincent” by Don McLean? This song was actually dedicated to Van Gogh.
His most famous, most appreciated and sought after masterpiece is the Starry Night. This great artwork is the culmination of his vocation as a painter. Thus, I leave it as the last one. It is the highlight of the exhibit, the prima donna of the gallery. It boasts of mastery of color, of lines, of expressionism. It captures the emotions of a calm, comfortable scenery we are all familiar with, the darkness of the night. His distinctive spirals and exceptional orbs of light can never be drawn again by another hand. His never-failing depth in painting draws the observer to look into finer details unnoticed at first glance.
Starry Night is truly a thing of beauty. Furnishings and Decorations The paintings will be arranged as they are listed above. The first two will be on the right wall of the first room. The self-portrait will be in the middle of the room to emphasize that the gallery is purely Van Gogh. The next two will be on the left wall of the first room. In the second room, the next two paintings will be on the right wall while the other two will be on the left wall. Starry Night will be on the wall facing the door to the first room. This arrangement is preferred to draw the attention to Van Gogh’s greatest masterpiece.
Each painting will be lit from below. Moreover, the only lights on the room will be those that light up the paintings. As one enters the gallery, the song “Starry, Starry Night” or “Vincent” by Don McLean plays on the background. Additional furnishings are excerpts from the many letters Van Gogh wrote to his friends and families. The letters will be etched on rectangular glass plates mounted on pillars and lighted from behind the glass. The pillars will be waist-level in height with the rectangular plates tilted in a 45° angle. These furnishings will be located beside the doors and on the right side of each artwork in exhibit.
Outside the gallery will be a small tent with a single table where visitors can buy souvenirs such as printed copies of the paintings and books about the painter. Groups of visitors will also be guided with ushers and usherettes who knew the backgrounds of each painting on display. Finale Such will be the whole overview of the exhibition. It aims to bring appreciation and admiration to anyone who happens to have the time to peek at one of humanity’s great painters. It also opens the hearts of people and society to instill in them immense respect to artists of the present.
I hope the journey to the heart and emotions of Van Gogh through his paintings leave us amused of the man who once lived the world that never understood him until he died.
Callow, P. (1990). Vincent Van Gogh: A Life. Ivan R. Dee Publishing. Gayford, M. (2006). The Yellow House: Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Nine Turbulent Weeks in Arles. Penguin Books. Hulsker, J. (1980) The Complete Van Gogh Phaidon. Oxford University Press. Rewald, J. (1987). Post-Impressionism: From van Gogh to Gauguin. Revised Edition. Secker and Warburg. Wilkie, K. (1990). The Van Gogh File. A Journey of
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Topic: Van Gogh In Paris
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