Vincent Van Gogh and the Colors of the Night
November 13, 2008 10:33 PM   Subscribe

Explore painter Vincent Van Gogh's "nocturnal interiors and landscapes, which often combine with other longstanding themes of his art -- peasant life, sowers, wheatfields, and the encroachment of modernity on the rural scene." View "paintings, drawings, and letters from all periods of his career, as well as examples of the rich literary sources that influenced his work." Also includes audio commentary.flash. via posted by hortense (7 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Excellent find as usual, Hortense.
posted by Cranberry at 12:22 AM on November 14, 2008

Despite the obligatory quirky flash interface (weird [more] links when the whole content wold have fit without them), this was an excellent presentation. The audio commentary was interesting and the thematic arrangement fascinating. Thanks for the tip.
posted by Lame_username at 12:35 AM on November 14, 2008

I am not Spock.
posted by Mblue at 3:35 AM on November 14, 2008

I was just looking through one of my van Gogh books yesterday. The man's art still leaves me flabbergasted.

The Vincent van Gogh Gallery is a pretty nice online resource for information about van Gogh and his oeuvre.
posted by maxwelton at 4:02 AM on November 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

hortense, What treasure! Yes, the flash sites for artists' works are SO aggravating! Why don't they simply put up the art SIMPLY? grrr.

Apart from the flash presentation the work is exquisite and well worth the effort to see it. What a feast of beauty, many paintings I had seen before or had forgotten. Thanks for this post.
posted by nickyskye at 6:21 AM on November 14, 2008

The one thing that always bothers me with reproductions of Van Gogh in general and The Starry Night in particular is how (unavoidably) two-dimensional they appear. In person, they take on a far greater depth from the very thick layers of paint Van Gogh became so fond of using...sometimes I think of him less as a painter than as a sculptor who happened to use oil paint for his medium. (There is a reproduction at a local diner which on close inspection reveals very dark shades of ink used to recreate what are actually shadows from the thickness of the paint in the original.)

The Starry Night is one of the most lauded paintings in history, and justly so in my opinion. While I had always enjoyed the reproductions I had seen, standing in front of the original was a revelation. I found myself completely transfixed, and I felt that I could have gazed at it for an eternity. Marveling at this painting can be a transcendent experience.

Not to take anything away from this fantastic website (thanks, hortense!), but if you ever have the opportunity to see any of these paintings in the original, it's well worth the time and effort.
posted by malocchio at 10:42 AM on November 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

I have two reproductions of Starry Night - a large one above my bed, and a smaller one in the living room.

I agree with malocchio about the depth being missing. It is an amazing painting in reproduction, and it is even better 'in person'. I love the way Van Gogh carved with paint.
posted by sandraregina at 1:36 PM on November 14, 2008

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