Vincent Van Gogh was born in 1853 in Holland. Van Gogh worked various jobs before becoming a theology student in Amsterdam. But because of both professional and personal failures Van Gogh decided to "comfort the humble" and he went to live and work in a mining community. While working and living in the mining community Van Gogh found himself drawn more and more to art. So in 1880 Vincent moved to Brussels and then to Antwerp to study painting. Van Gogh didn't start his career in art until he was 27. He soon began to follow the influence of impressionism and began his own style (Rewald 225). Throughout Van Gogh's life he battled with insanity, which could explain the painting of himself with his ear bandaged. It is thought that Van Gogh might have ate his lead paint which could have possible caused his insanity.
Vincent Van Gogh was one of the most influential contributors to the post-impressionist movement even though his paintings were not respected or accepted in his own time. Post-impressionism refers not to a collective style but to a time period, which falls between 1880 and 1910. Such a term as post-impressionism indicates the increasingly fragmented artistic scene that would come to characterize modern art of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries (Stokstad 1039). During Van Gogh's final years he began to paint in a very expressionistic manner because of his heightened emotional state at the insane asylum. Van Gogh used these feeling to paint in a more emotional style than in a realistic style. This emotional state can explain some of his paintings like "The Starry Night". This painting was created while in the insane asylum and its seems like Van Gogh was already thinking about his death and about moving to a heavenly place above in the stars (www.tqn.com/library/weekly/aa.032798.htm).
Vincent's painting style was like a child's painting with his simplicity of color and the roughness of his brushstrokes. He was greatly influenced by realism because he wanted to create what was actually there with his bright colors put on the canvas in a rough style (Rewald 228). Van Gogh was well know for his use of primary colors placed next to each other in large amounts that balance out as the viewer move back from the painting. Van Gogh's style for his self-portrait took after the style that Georges Seurat created ...
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...vity at the end of his life. Van Gogh was greatly criticized during his lifetime and his style was never accepted during his time. But, now he is one of the most highly publicized artists of all time. With many of his painting selling for millions and millions of dollars (Rewald 230). Vincent Van Gogh along with Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Paul Cezanne, Georges Seurat, and Paul Gauguin are now seen to be the main artists of the post-impressionist period. These painters were also at the beginning of the Modernism movement (Stokstad 1025). Although Van Gogh was only painted for 10 years his genius and style has lasted through the ages and his works are seen as brilliant and inspirational today.
"The art of Vincent Van Gogh", www.tqn.com/library/weekly/aa.032798.htm
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"Vincent Van Gogh, 1853-1890",www.ndirect.co.uk/~nas/masters/gogh/vaugh
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Hammacher, A.M. and R. Van Gogh: A Documentary Biography.
New York: MacMillan, 1982.
Rewald, John. Post Impressionist from Van Gogh to Gauguin.
New York: Museum of modern art. 1989.
Stokstad, Marylyn. Art History. New York: Harry n. Abrams,
Inc., and Preston Hall, Inc, 1999.
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