"I : VINCENT VAN GOGH PAGE......" Netherlands Travelogue by eden_teuling

Netherlands Travel Guide: 35,318 reviews and 94,795 photos


When you are really interested and want to know more about Vincent then read the book in which is the correspondence he carried on with his brother Theo, who had an Art Gallery in Paris and who never failed to help Vincent when he needed money for painting materials.
He was a true brother and friend who supported Vincent till his tragic end.

How must he have felt looking in the mirror and seeing himself there, probably trying to find out who and what he really was, I suppose.
He made several self portraits during his short life.
They all show a serious, introverted, sad and shy man.
He must have felt like a clam that refused to open itself to show its "MOTHER-OF-PEARL" inside to the world.
How painful that struggle to open up must have been and how frustrating and disturbing.

I wonder, how can one work with a head full of strange, whirling and swirling thoughts, that fight to win and to get one down!


Painted by Vincent van Gogh when he was in AUVERS (France) in 1890.

It is oil on canvas.


Vincent often moved from the Provence to the more southern region of the Camarque and painted there this serene scene of a series of roof.
He did this in quiet colours although the colour of the sun is again overwhelmingly present. It catches the eye immediately and in a mesmerizing way.

But his brush stroke is quiet and self-restrained which must have pleased him and must have given him the chance to have a good night's rest, so that his poor, dark mind could become less restless, for some time at least, I hope.

I can imagine him sitting high above the street and being taken in by the natural composition the roofs showed.
There are no people in this painting, although they easily could have walked, talked and stood there but our Vincent was so obsessed by the roofs seen from his perch that these people didn't exist for him, his eyes just didn't send a sign to his brains that they were there and probably didn't want to see them.
He will have been working, my poor redhead, moving his eyes from roofs to canvas, from canvas to roofs, time and again.........the way artists use to do.


Again time for a still-life, this time in all shades of red, rose, pink and off-white with a red tinge.

They are carefully arranged in a green glass, strongly painted with firm strokes and a refined use of colours.....and giving us an almost bird's eye view of the bouquet.

Yet, some flowers are already whithering a bit, red leaves on the table........vulnerability, mortality, no time to lose..
His palette shows a wonderful scala of colours, please share this beauty with me and take your time to let your eyes dwell to their hearts' contents upon this bouquet.


This here shows Les Beaux (Provence, France)in the distance. He must have been near the Mont Majour, the monastery he (and I too ) visited so many times, looking out over the fields.
These colours rolling over the canvass up and down again, from right to left, every millimeter so special and so unique; I can only ask you to enjoy it with me.

This is a work to explore, there is so many to discover and re-discover, e.g. the colours softly, softly going from one nuance of green into another shade, as do the yellows and browns, the reds and bluegreens.....

Isn't this really an enchanting, captivating work of art ? Come, join me here........how happy he would be if he could see us all.......so moved by HIS work.

I can recommend this place to you: go sit there and see what his troubled eyes and mind saw and you will feel that he himself too, is there, next to you.....you can almost touch him!!


I always wonder in what mood he must have been while painting this on his many-times-used and re-used canvas. The money from Theo hasn't arrived yet and he MUST work, MUST go on he is urged on by something I cannot catch in words.
Could it be possible that he felt somewhat better, a bit gay even, see that bright blue in the skies!?
Again the fabulous shades in greens, from tender spring green to sea-blue-green, no time to mix it with other colours or..... would he have run out of other colours and is this a manifestation of utter despair, anger perhaps; we shall never know, but I like to stick to my first explanaition: this was one of his good days and he enjoyed it, couldn't believe what was happening to him, his mind light as the fluffy swirls of cloud, didn't need many colours to show his good mood, just wanted to work, work, work, like mad....
didn't feel the threat yet.........This is a lively painting, full of curls and pleasantrly fanciful, playful expressions.....such, oh, such sweet curves.
Lighter colours this day, signs of a heart a bit unburdened ? I hope so for him, he deserved some peace of mind......


Le docteur Gachet.
Vincent couldn't win the fight. The struggle was asking too much of him and the little strength and health in body and mind. The fits of insanity became more frequent and violent.

However, he went on working, had a good understanding with his doctor, which was mutual, and which doctor willingly posed for him perhaps even not knowing how much this meant to Vincent and how pleased he was with these opportunities.

At times his mind went in circles, made him mad and raving. How powerless and helpless he must have felt, as certainly did Theo and le docteur.

He could no longer controle them, these pitchdark periods of insanity, just see his letters, read about his desperation and shed some tears; he had deserved so much better.

He left us a treasure chest full of the finest works of art, feelings, thoughts and longings which his hands put on the canvas.

Theo still provided him with extra money for all he needed to be able to continue working, creating the purest beauty.

Le docteur in the Asylum was also very good to him. This Asylum is in St. Rémy in the Provence, a region in the South East of France, the place he loved most of all.
Have you already discovered that wonderful, lively deep-blue colour in this picture? Now we would call it Chagall-blue !


"This man will either go mad or he will outpace us all". Such was the fate which Camille Pissarro, the great Impressionist painter, predicted for his colleague Vincent van Gogh, a struggling artist still vainly seeking a buyer for his paintings. He was to prove right on both counts........all his life he remained a solitary and despairing figure, and his self-destructive nature drove him, in his later years, to the brink of madness.

The recognition and admiration for which van Gogh fought so bitterly would only be granted after the self-inflicted revolver-shot with which ended his tragic life.

Today, van Gogh is considered not simply the most important pioneer of 20th-Century art, but is widely regarded as one of the most significant and best-loved painters in the entire history of art.

In terms of the prices paid for his paintings alone, he has broken every record.He produced no less than 871 paintings.

I realize that this is a travel site but.........why not travel to The Netherlands and France to the places that were so important to him ?

Let me help you: IN VINCENT'S FOOTSTEPS is a book which helps you find all these places.........

This picture is THE SEATED ZOUAVE, painted in 1888


Vincent painted these in 1890


Vincent van Gogh painted this Lavenderfields during one of his frequent stays at the region THE PROVENCE in the South of France i.e. the South East.
He was born here in the Netherlands, not far, only a few kilometers, from the place where I was born. He worked here and in France where he was fascinated by the sun(light).
I visited all the places where he lived, worked and in the end died by his own hand.
He lived from 1853 - 1890.
This card represents a View of the Saintes Maries, a place in the South of France.
Pick some and put it in your wardrobe and all through winter you will be reminded of your visit because each time you touch the dried flowers they seem to wake up to spread their sweet smells.


This pot of chives: it must have been in some woman's kitchen window-sill somewhere in the fragrantly warm air of the Provence in the South of France.
She must have been taking care for it painstakingly, seeing to it that it didn't get to much sun, yet enough light and water.
These chives have such tender long leaves, slightly folded inwards lengthwise as a woman stands when she feels the cool seabreeze suddenly comes rolling in, in the afternoon, here in Zeeland, Holland.

The surprise of the chives is the smell (onion-like) andthe taste, so refined, the most refined member of the allium family!.

Then after some weeks the dilemma: do I harvest and enrich my salad with its delectable taste or do I wait till the endearing, oh so charming little pink flowers appear that can cheer up my kitchen for weeks?? but then....the taste will be gone!!!!

Solution: plant more than one pot! and gone is the dilemma.

The fact that it caught Vincent's eye is revealing: he must have taken his palette, mixed the colours with the quick movements of one who knows what he is doing.

Do imagine him, sitting there at the kitchen table in a sunny kitchen, a wooden chair and table (blue probably),for a short while completely at ease, the taste of the chives still on his tongue,drowsy after a good meal with one of his woman friends who had invited him, Vincent, satified but suddenly in the mood to immortalize this pot in a leisurely way, with fine brushes, refined touches, peacefully soft colours..

He should have had more such days, nothing else but such days, a happier life, but his poor head with the lovely red hair didn't know how to handle life-of-an-artist ....He only knew how to paint, paint and paint......


My dear friend liked to make stillives too; see this one, enjoy the colours; sniff up the bittersweet smell of the fresh coffee>, the blushing apples and the orange coloured Cheirantum, which also has a place of its own in my garden.

He must have created this on one of his happier days, of which he had so few in his too short and oh, so unhappy life.

The restlessness, the feeling of failing, life that made things so unbearable to him, I pity him.

During his life only ONE painting was sold and now: millions and millions (of Dollars/euros) are spent with pleasure to possess one of his works.

I think it would make me sad to see one of his works in my house, it would force me to look at it and each time make me feel what and how he must have felt, lonely and forlorn in this too cruel world.


NATURE meant everything to Vincent.
Many a day and night he spent outdoors, often caught in confusing thoughts.

Yet he saw the beauty and wanted to find a way, a means to catch and keep it, gave heart, soul and body to this task he set himself.

He took his brushes, paint, palette and canvas to try to unburden his aching heart by throwing and spreading the paint with trembling, hesitating hand, with brush or knife on the challenging canvas.

There were however days that he could paint with the most tender of touches flowers I know, the poppies, that musy have quieted and calmed him down for some time.

I never fail to feel privileged to be able, to have the opportunity to admire and take in his breathtaking and at the same time heartbraking works of his artist's soul in his own new Museum in Amsterdam on the Museum square.

http://www.vangoghmuseum.nl for more info !


These red vineyards near ARLES, that wonderful city in the South of France, in the Provence, the region Vincent loved so much although the sun there can be so merciless, sending its rays like arrows down on the yellowing corn, the brown-burned grass, the pinkish blue lavender and the yellow and brown petals and hearts of the millions of sun flowers, so magnificent and majestic.

See and admire, absorb and take in these rich, warm colours, the redish-brown, the ochres, the wonderful greens and of course the yellow-range sun, ready to sink down to give life there a little space of time to recover and to prepareitself to be able to face the next sunny, hot day which, however hot means life and growth.

Vincent, this poor man, was so over-sensitive and especially the sun mesmerized him, sucking him into her enormous hot, red, orange and yellow heart.

By painting her, the sun, he tried to ignore and force away the darkness in his own heart.

He painted this work in 1888 when he settled in ARLES.


These flowers, carefully arranged in the vase, put against a redish-brown background, a curtain perhaps? is so fabulously grandiose and that is what troubles me so much.

He, Vincent himself was never satisfied with what he had done and, as if knowing that he wouldn't have years and years to study and try, was always in a haste, a restless hurry to make progress, to see that the next painting was better than the last one.

He always felt impatient and lacked time to learn, therefore he worked night and day, ruining his health by drinking too much to be able to work so many hours!

He must have been so very afraid for the future, the little time that was given him............


L'eglise d"Auvers sur Oise in this painting, so endearing, isn't it? He painted it many times. It is in Auvers that his fits of insanity came more frequent and he got worse and worse to his bitter experience.
Here he had the most difficult times of his life and it was here that he couldn't but commit suicide in the end.
heo arrived as soon as possible after having received the bad, heartbreaking news and tried to help and support his brother just by being there during the last hours of his life, because after his attempt Vincent still lived for two days, tormented and suffering. He, Theo, must have been able to caress his hands that had worked so many hours, urged on by his mind........to stroke Vincent's beloved pale face, red, red hands, hair and head.......

He lies buried in Auvers, having lived from 1853 till 1890.

Little did Theo know that he too, would die a few months after Vincent and he was buried next to his brother: brothers and friends through thick and thin, united in life and united in death, lying close and peacefully in the French soil.

Were his early works quite dark and heavy in form, later he replaced it by the lighter Impressionists techniques in Paris.
In 1888 he moved to Arles (a very interesting and pleasant city in The Provence, which I can recommend to you too.......)

Little did he, Vincent, know that his work would influence later expressionists>.

I, elisabeth c.g., did my best to please you by putting together this extra Vincent van Gogh page and hope I succeedded in making you one of his admirers if you weren't one already, of course.


  • Page Updated Feb 16, 2005
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