Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890) is an internationally renowned Dutch post-impressionist artist. Today it is a classic of painting, whose works are sold for millions of dollars. The biography of Van Gogh is a classic example of a genius, not understood by his contemporaries, who lived a life of an outcast and a sufferer. The artist’s paintings are known today to everyone, but his life remains a mystery, being enveloped in myths.
We only know about the madness of Van Gogh, cut off the ear, and suicide. Meanwhile, this man had a wide range of interests, today his biography is fairly well set out by historians. And the most famous misconceptions and myths about the personality of Van Gogh acquire real meaning. Even the first biographers of the master, deliberately or not, contributed to the appearance of the legend.
Van Gogh saw the world not as an ordinary person, but curls and strokes.
This myth explains why the artist created such original pictures. However, the first creations of Van Gogh belonged to the genre of “peasant painting”. The artist tried to portray the lives of ordinary villagers. And there are no curls, bright colors. The pictures themselves are rather dark and even gloomy. So it’s not necessary to talk about special sight. All the work of Van Gogh is concluded in search of a new form of expression. He himself wrote: “I’m looking. I aim to. I’m in it with all my heart. ” It is likely that at some point the brother of Van Gogh, Theo, himself a successful art dealer, advised Vincent to move away from the hackneyed themes of peasant painting in favor of more fashionable impressionism. Bright and bright paintings attracted attention, it was necessary to wait only for the recognition of the public.
The excess of yellow color in the paintings of Van Gogh is due to the artist’s passion for absinthe.
Love for this drink is thought to cause hallucinations and change the person’s perception of color. However, it is not clear to what extent and how often it is necessary to use absinthe to reach such a state. And not only Van Gogh abused absinthe, but accuse him of the incorrect color rendition. Moreover, just at the time of aggravation of mental illness the artist could not create. Addiction only hindered him, but did not help.
Van Gogh lived in poverty and died absolutely unknown.
In fact, Van Gogh did not live in poverty. It was financially provided by a younger brother, so Vincent did not grab for any work, exchanging talent. Leo saw his brother’s obvious abilities, paying him a monthly allowance, buying paint, books on art, materials. Enough money even for prostitutes. Although fashionable and popular, Van Gogh did not really, but he closely communicated with the most promising and young artists, which still awaited fame: Degas, Gogen, Pissarro, Toulouse-Lautrec. And at the very end of his life, Van Gogh was still seen by critics who began to highlight his work. He did not become rich, however, the position of the master was better than that of many of his fellow contemporaries.
Van Gogh was a real madman who simply splashed emotions onto the canvas.
In his letters to his brother Theo Vincent constantly talked about painting, creativity, techniques and materials, setting tasks. And from the very childhood the artist studied languages and took drawing lessons. He was considered very hardworking, stubborn and clever. Depression in Van Gogh and seizures of epilepsy due to excessive love of absinthe appeared only at the end of life. The artist himself wrote that to this state, he deliberately made himself, because in a calm state his gaze became empty. Here, unrecognized public played its role. But today, many go crazy and from lesser problems. And the myth created by the art critic Julius Meyer-Gref. He said that Vincent did literally in a blind ecstasy, splashing out the temperament on the canvas. Van Gogh himself was a real workaholic, arguing that in art it is necessary “to work as a few Negroes, taking off your skin.”In the last months of his life, the artist could create a picture in a few hours, but at the same time repeating that he worked for years to learn how to create standing in such a short time. On the work of inspiration there was no question – Van Gogh worked long and hard on one motive. The same “Sunflowers” were created several options. Van Gogh created a thoughtful from the creative and commercial side of the series. And Gauguin wrote about a friend: “You are the only thinking artist of all.”
Van Gogh in a fit of madness cut off his ear and gave it to a prostitute.
This extravagant act became the artist’s calling card. Not everyone remembers his paintings, but this fact has forever become associated with Van Gogh. The legend says that a certain prostitute liked the ears of the artist. This lady Van Gogh and gave his ear, not having the means to purchase a Christmas gift. In reality, he lost not the ear, but only his part, the lobe, and even then – under mysterious conditions. It is believed that at that time housing with Van Gogh filmed Gauguin. Artists did a lot together, fiercely arguing about art. And one day, in the heat of the argument, the emotional Gauguin slashed his comrade in the ear. He himself was an experienced fighter, possessing extensive experience of such clashes in sailors’ taverns. So the version about the attack of Van Gogh, and that he was chasing with a blade for his colleague, was invented by Gauguin himself. In this light, history justified it. Yes, and Van Gogh loved his comrade, so he could quite hide his bad deed. Under the root cut off the ear meant to bleed, because the medical aid to the artist was provided only after 10 hours. And in the medical report it is just about the cut off lobe.
Van Gogh committed suicide.
Classic is the story of the suicide of Van Gogh. July 27, 1890, he took a walk and shot himself in the heart of a pistol, purchased to scare away birds. Feathered to create in the open air. The artist in the heart did not hit and managed to get to the hotel, where he managed to say goodbye to his brother. But this version in 2011 received an alternative. American art historians, laureates of the Pulitzer Prize, Stephen Nafeh and Gregory Smith in their book wrote that there was no suicide. The forensic expert, who noted the absence of burns on his hands, which should have appeared in such a case, did not believe it either. And the gun itself could not be found, as well as the eyewitnesses of the incident. It is unclear why to arrange such a painful death for himself, and not shoot in the head? It is highly likely that one of the teenage hooligans who had been drinking with Van Gogh in local eateries was shooting. They could play with firearms in cowboys. The artist himself at the time kept silent about Gauguin’s offense, probably having decided to regret the boys. At this time, Van Gogh was in the deepest depression, he simply was not interested. He did not blame someone and humbly left his life.
Van Gogh was not recognized by his contemporaries.
In recent years, the artist has received a certain fame. Since 1888, famous critics Felix Fenelon and Gustave Kahn, reviewing the work of independent avant-gardists, highlighted the vivid creativity of Van Gogh. Critic Octave Mirbo even advised Rodin to purchase the work of an unusual master. The paintings of Van Gogh were in the collection of Edgar Degas, very subtle connoisseurs of art. Even during the life of the artist in the newspaper “Mercure de France” he was written about as a great artist, heir of Rembrandt and Huls. The work of the Dutchman was devoted entirely to the article of star critic Henri Orie. He himself was going to work on the biography of Van Gogh, but he could not, having died of tuberculosis.
Van Gogh tried to get to know God and the people, serving as a preacher among miners.
This story became the basis for the God-seeking legend of Van Gogh. In 1879, he really served as a preacher in the Belgian mining town of Borinazh. Biographers saw this as a desire to suffer along with the miserable and destitute, breaking with their own environment.In fact, Vincent in those years decided to become a priest, like his father. But to obtain the rank, it took five years to study in the seminary or to pass an accelerated three-year simplified and free course in the evangelical school with a six-month service missionary. So Van Gogh and was among miners. He tried to help them, but did not plan to get closer, remaining a representative of his middle class. And after the expiry of the term, Van Gogh went to school. That’s only the conditions have changed, and there was a fee for studying for the Dutch. Van Gogh decided to abandon religion and became an artist. His temporary missionary work was a necessary step for a spiritual career, not a rush of the soul.
When life was sold, only one painting by Van Gogh.
This myth is part of the image of an unrecognized genius. In 1890, Theo for 400 francs sold the landscape “Red vineyards in Arles.” The picture was written 2 years before. However, the facts say that the artist still had greater success. At least one of his paintings was sold in England. It’s about one of Van Gogh’s self-portraits. Some London dealers Sally and Lorry acquired a picture of a little-known Dutchman. Popular drawings used by Van Gogh, but still it was not enough for complete independence from his brother.
Van Gogh was a man of the people, a rebel and even an anarchist.
The same biographer, Julius Meyer-Gref, constantly changed his emphasis on the history of Van Gogh’s life. The legend was introduced in Germany, where no one knew the artist. At first Van Gogh appeared as a man from the people, a herald of modernity. But this genre soon ran out. Then Van Gogh began to be called a rebel avant-garde, which was liked by bohemia, but not to the townsfolk. And only in 1921 appeared the image of a genius madman, whose hand was governed by God himself. In fact, Van Gogh graduated from a private gymnasium, spoke freely in three languages and read a lot. Colleagues nicknamed the artist Spinoza. Behind Van Gogh, there was always a family that supported him in his endeavors. Grandfather created bindings of ancient manuscripts for royal houses, uncles traded art, in the family there was even an admiral. The artist himself grew up as a pragmatic person.
In his latest film, Van Gogh reported on a future suicide.
Van Gogh finished the film “Wheat Field with Ravens” 19 days before his death. In the film “The Thirst for Life” is shown even as an artist, having finished work on a picture, kills himself. But there is no evidence that the depressive picture is a death message. And now the last work is considered “Wheat fields”, which became clear from the correspondence of the artist with his brother. The cost of the canvas now is not less than 20 million dollars. But there is no connection between the paintings and the death of Van Gogh. He sent his last letter to his brother in four days. They mentioned the Garden of Dobigny and “cottages with thatched roofs,” there were no mystical signs and hints.
Van Gogh worked at night, setting candles in his hat.
This myth appeared in 1922 in the book of the French journalist Gustave Coco. He told an anecdote about the work of Van Gogh in a hat with candles while working on “Starry Night.” But the artist himself told that he worked under the light of an ordinary gas lamp.
Painting “Room in Arles” proves the insane state of the artist.
An unnaturally curved space is presented as evidence of a malfunction in the psyche of Van Gogh. However, it turned out that he very realistically portrayed reality. In the house in Arles, where he lived Van Gogh, the walls and ceiling were indeed beveled.
Van Gogh overheated in the open air, which is why he went crazy.
It is known that Van Gogh loved to work in the open air. He did not tolerate the smell of turpentine, which was diluted with paint. And this fact formed the basis of a new myth. Biographers wrote that Van Gogh loved his source of inspiration, the sun, that he did not even cover his head.As a result, all the hair was burnt, and the unprotected skull systematically baked rays, which brought the artist crazy. However, in the late self-portraits of Van Gogh and on the portraits of the already dead artist it is noticeable that the hair on his head was present for the rest of his life.
Van Gogh considered himself a loner and did not want to start a family.
The staff of the Van Gogh museum note that most of all the artist wanted to have just a family with children. The man was very hard acquainted with strangers and rarely allowed anyone into his inner world. In his short life there was only one and a half year of “playing” in the family. The role of his wife was played by a former prostitute and model Sin Hurnik, already with her child. After a long relationship came to an end, Van Gogh could no longer build a harmonious and long-term relationship with women. The news that he will be an uncle, for Vincent became joyful. He even painted the canvas “Flowering branches of almonds” under the impression. Now this picture decorates the family collection of heirs.