Saturday, February 03, 2007


So you really want to find out more about VanGogh, eh? You want to find out what I have up my artistic sleeve? Me too.
In this post I'll go over what I already know about VanGogh in terms of his art and his personality so you, dear reader, can understand just what I've gotten myself into. Believe me, it's a doozy...

A little background on VanGogh:
- born March 30th, 1853 in the Netherlands
- his father, Theodorus, was a Dutch Reformed Church pastor (can anyone say strict household?) and his mother, Anna Cornelia, was the daughter of a bookbinder
- he had several siblings, his brother Theo and sister Willemina (Wil) being his favorites
- he had an appreciation of nature and an enormous respect for the peasant working class
- he began his career in art early (16 yrs old), going to work at Goupil & Co., a large art dealing company
- he was, by all accounts, unsuccessful in love and dealing with people in general
- knew many of the Impressionists but was particularly buddy-buddy with Gauguin
- he suffered from many physical and mental disorders
- he had a thing for cypress trees and yellow
- he ultimately ended his own life by shooting himself in the chest

Okay, that's the Reader's Digest version but as I go through this month and as I find out more I will elaborate on some of the above and share new information.

It's safe to say that VanGogh was a wacko (let's be honest here folks) but he produced such an enormous body of work, which includes oil paintings, watercolours, drawings and sketches, that to disregard his influence on art would be like believing the world is flat.
If you want to find out more about him or see some of his works check out:

- Van Gogh's letters at
- the (online) Vincent VanGogh Gallery
- WebMuseum info on VanGogh
- Wikipedia info on VanGogh

To try and understand the creative processes of and individual that at times didn't seem to understand himself is no small task...but I'll try. On that note I'll leave you will some of my doodles that were done after a couple of VanGogh's sketches. These were done fairly quickly (about 30 mins each) and were not meant to be rigid copies but sketches to try and understand how VanGogh "saw" things. The first is "Peasant Woman Stooping and Gleaning" and the other is "Figure on a Road". I told you I'd show you pencil stuff...

Back on Monday with more art and information. Enjoy the week-end!


Katherine said...

Jolly fine 'after VG' work!

MrsSnowy said...

Rita, I followed Katherine's link to your blog. You have come up with some great data on Vincent. I didn't know about the colour of music. I love it. These are super drawings after the Master. Looking forward to seeing what you settle on as your main work for the project. The barn has a lot of potential.

Rita said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rita said...

Thanks Katherine and mrssnowy!

I can actually remember back in high-school my music teacher mentioning this colour/ music association to me because he knew that I was very much "into" art.
I'm hoping later this year to do a personal project based on how music affects my art, a real "let loose" type of experiment.
Now I just need to decide on what I'd like to do for this project! :D