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History of Vincent Van Gogh Artist

Posted by Art Of Legend India [dot] Com On 1:18 AM
Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent Van GoghOne of the most original artists ever, Vincent van Gogh worked as an evangelist before taking up painting at the age of 27. He was largely self-taught, but absorbed the inspiring lessons of Impressionism during two years in Paris. Then he moved alone to Arles in the south of France, where he painted the landscapes, still-lives and portraits which became his most famous works. 

Vincent Willem van Gogh was born on 30 March 1853 in the small Dutch village of Groot Zundert, near the Belgian frontier. He was the first surviving son of the local pastor, Theodorus van Gogh, and his wife Cornelia, a gentle, artistic woman. By an extraordinary coincidence, the boy was born exactly one year to the day after Cornelia had delivered a stillborn baby, also called Vincent Willem. The grieving parents had placed a gravestone in the village churchyard for their lost infant, so little Vincent grew up with a constant reminder of his dead namesake. He was a difficult child, who spent his time walking alone in the fields, rarely playing even with his younger brother Theo or his three little sisters there is no record of his school career but encouraged by his mother he drew and painted regularly from his early teens.
The artist's parents Theodorus van Gogh, the pastor of Groot Zundert, was a pious man who encouraged his son's religious leanings, but Vincent's passionate evangelism provoked many arguments between them. His wife Anna, a bookbinder's daughter, was related to painters and art dealers. She painted watercolors before her marriage.
Art dealer with a business in  the hague which he had merged with the Paris based internationally frim of goupil & Co. when  Vincent left school at the age of 16, uncle cent found him a job in the hauge of fice and he worked there stedily for four years with a short stint in the Brussels branch but this transferred to London where he fell disastrously in love with his landlady daughter this after affected his ability to work and he was dismissed .in 1876 van goah returned to England as an un paid assistant at a private school in ramsgate

The artist's parents Theodorus van Gogh, the pastor of Groot Zundert, was a pious man who encouraged his son's religious leanings, but Vincent's passionate evangelism provoked many arguments between them. His wife Anna, a bookbinder's daughter, was related to painters and art dealers. She painted watercolors before her marriage. when  Vincent left school at the age of 16, uncle cent found him a job in the hauge of fice and he worked there stedily for four years with a short stint in the Brussels branch but this transferred to London where he fell disastrously in love with his landlady daughter this after affected his ability to work and he was dismissed .in 1876 van goah returned to England as an un paid assistant at a private school in ramsgate.

After a few months the school moved to London, and he was given the job of collecting overdue school fees in some of the city's poorest areas. It was his first real view of urban squalor and what he saw so distressed him that he could not bring him-self to collect a penny. He was dismissed again. But the experience of poverty awakened a religious zeal in Van Gogh, who now followed his father's example by becoming an assistant preacher to a Methodist minister. He enjoyed this work enormously, and after a few months he re-turned to Holland to train formally for the minis-try.

Mission to the miners At the age of 25, Van Gogh went as a missionary to the Borinage district of Belgium. There he made his decision to be an artist.  
Vincent's parents doubted that he had the self-discipline to cope with the rigorous studies required. They were right: he gave up after a year. But his passion was unchecked and at the age of 25 he moved to the Borinage, a grim coal-mining district in southern Belgium, as an evangelist.

A GIFT TO THE POOR  

The poverty Vincent found there was even worse than in London. He threw himself into his work with a selfless fervour, interpreting Christ's message to 'give to the poor' so literally that he even gave his warm clothes away, and ate almost no-thing. His superiors were appalled by his 'excessive' zeal. They were also dismayed by his appearance, which they felt brought disrespect on his calling.

Once again, Vincent was dismissed. Van Gogh remained in the Borinage for two hard years, surviving no-one knew how. And there he went through a profound personal crisis to emerge with a new resolve: to be an artist. He went home to his parents and applied him-self to the task with the same vigor he had 


Vincent's Lost Loves 

The move to Arles Vincent left Paris in 1888 for Arles, near Marseilles. He worked there alone for nine months, before persuading Gauguin to join him. Throughout his life, Van Gogh was plagued by loneliness. He never married, and his few attempts to find happiness with women all ended disastrously. Vincent's first love affair was with his landlady's daughter in England: it disturbed him so much that he lost his job. The second was with Kee Vos, his widowed cousin who was staying with his parents in Holland. Scared by ardent protestations of love for her, she fled to Amsterdam.

He still craved a loving relationship, and when he met a pregnant prostitute called Sien in The Hague, he saw it as his mission to give her love and protection. Vincent lived with Sien and her children, revelled in his 'family life', and planned to marry her. But the unlikely couple parted after a year. 
Brought to evangelism. For months he was hap pier than ever before, and his work improved rapidly. But ominous signs of instability revealed themselves in his stormy behavior. Another abortive love affair shook him badly; then a religious quarrel with his father reached such a pitch that Vincent walked out of the house on Christmas Day 1881, and moved to The Hague.

With no money to live on, he was forced to ask Theo for help. His loyal brother sent him a tiny allowance each month from his own small salary in the spirit of self-sacrifice that would endure throughout Vincent's life. Meanwhile the landscape artist Anton Mauve (a relation of Van Gogh's mother) encouraged his painting until a typical outburst brought their friendship to an end. Defiantly, Vincent shared his room with a prostitute and her small child, and even talked of marriage until Theo persuaded him to drop the plan. 

PORTRAITS OF PEASANTS
 
The move to Arles Vincent left Paris in 1888 for Arles, near Marseilles. He worked there alone for nine months, before persuading Gauguin to join him.
Vincent returned home in 1884. His parents had moved to a new church in Nuenen; they welcomed him like a prodigal son. He began to work on portraits of peasants and after yet another emotional disaster he executed his most ambitious picture so far: The Potato Eaters a gloomy painting of peasants at their evening meal. Pastor Theodorus died in 1885, and the same year Van Gogh left Holland, never to return. He went first to Belgium and enrolled at the academy in Antwerp, but failed his first term of study. By the time the results were declared, he had already left for Paris. One day Theo still working for Goupil’s received a brief note urging him to 'come to the Salle Carree (in the Louvre) as soon as possible,' where his brother was waiting.
Vincent moved into Theo's flat in Montmartre and studied for a few months at the studio of an academic painter named Fernand Carmon, along with Emile Bernard and Toulouse-Lautrec. All three soon broke with Carmon, who was hostile to the new Impressionist movement, led by Monet, Renoir and Degas. But Vincent was inspired by the colour of their paintings, and their habit of working in the open air. Through Theo, he met Camille Pissarro, one of the elder Impressionists, and a still more revolutionary figure Paul Gauguin.

DEPARTURE FOR THE SOUTH 

The move to Arles Vincent left Paris in 1888 for Arles, near Marseilles. He worked there alone for nine months, before persuading Gauguin to join him. But while Vincent's art progressed rapidly, he stuck out like a sore thumb among the urbane Parisian artists. He drank very heavily; he had a quick, unpredictable temper; he shouted when excited about something; and was incapable of either hiding his opinions or softening them to avoid arguments. He even managed to alienate Theo, but only for a time. After two years in Paris he declared 'I will take myself off somewhere down south.' In Paris, Vincent had come to like Japanese art and this influenced his choice of where to live.

As Embark on a project he had long desired: the establishment of an artists' colony. He wanted Paul Gauguin to be the first to join, and enlisted Theo to help persuade him. Gauguin - then working in Brittany - was reluctant at first, but when Theo offered to pay his fare, he finally agreed.

GAUGUIN IN ARLES 

The Asylum at st remy van gogh entered the mental asylum at st remy near arles in may 1889 for six months he had suffered recuring bouts of convulsions and hallucinations which terrified him the doctors gave him little treatment other than cold baths but allowed vincent to go out and paint during his periods of calmGauguin arrived at Arles in October 1888 and moved into the Yellow House, but he disliked the town and found Vincent's untidiness irritating. For a short time peace reigned, but within two months the artists were quarrelling fiercely. Cynical and arrogant, Gauguin made a bad match for the passionate, obstinate Dutchman. Van Gogh was soon making excuses to Theo for their lack of concord, predicting sadly that Gauguin would 'definitely go, or else definitely stay' and claiming to await his decision with 'absolute serenity'. But the very night he wrote these words, in Christmas week, 1888, something happened to snap Vincent's self-control. He threw a glass of absinthe at Gauguin, and later threatened him with a razor. Gauguin took shelter in a nearby hotel, leaving

Him to calm down. But during the night Van Gogh cut off the lobe of his right ear, then put it in an envelope and gave it to a prostitute. Gauguin left for Paris by the first available train; Vincent suffering from hallucinations as well as loss of blood - was taken to Arles hospital. He was released after two weeks, but overwork and a terror of madness brought on a relapse. He went back into hospital.


Gauguin comes to Arles In October 1888, Gauguin arrived in Arles for a short-lived, but disastrous collaboration with Van Gogh. The two men argued .fiercely, and Gauguin fled to Paris at Christmas when Vincent threatened to attack him with a razor - which he finally used on himself When he recovered enough to go back to the Yellow House, he was persecuted by the townspeople, 80 of whom signed a petition saying that the 'madman' should be put away. By the spring of 1889, when Vincent had been in Arles for a year, all his hope had gone. The artists’ colony had come to nothing. Gauguin had vanished. His friend Roulin had been transferred to another town.

Vincent dreaded the return of his insanity so much that in May he left Arles and committed himself voluntarily to an asylum in the nearby town of Saint Remy. Slowly he began to come to terms with his illness - perhaps a form of epilepsy, schizophrenia, or the result of brain damage at birth. He received no treatment except cold baths twice a week. Bouts of convulsions and hallucinations recurred in a three-monthly cycle, but he still produced some 200 canvases during his year in the asylum. In the spring of 1890 Theo reported hopeful signs that Vincent's work was at last being recognized. In February, a painting of an Arles vineyard was sold for 400 francs in a Brussels exhibition. It was the only canvas Van Gogh ever sold. 


DEATH IN AUVERS

Vincent's breakdown Overwhelmed with remorse after attacking Gauguin, Van Gogh cut off a piece of his own ear and gave it to a prostitute. The next day he was committed to Arles hospital. The nightmare of insanity, from which he would never fully recover, had begun.
It was time to leave the South. Vincent's old friend Camille Pissarro suggested he move to Auvers, a village northwest of Paris which was popular with artists. So Vincent spent a few days with Theo and his new wife - and their baby son, named Vincent Willem after his uncle then caught the train to Auvers. There he was placed in the care of Dr Cachet, an amiable eccentric.

Vincent painted steadily, and seemed at first to be healthy and in good spirits. He took a small room in a café, and kept regular hours. But early in July a trip to visit Theo in Paris caused him great anxiety. Theo was worried about money and the cost of supporting Vincent was very high.

Writer-Marshall Cavendish
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