maandag 11 februari 2019

How The Landscape Influenced van Gogh and his Art

How The Landscape Influenced van Gogh and his Art

By Giuseppe Cafiero

From his early years growing up in the unspoilt countryside of Brabant to his last years at the Saint-Paul asylum in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France, van Gogh was drawn to the natural landscape.

In a letter to his brother Theo, for instance, Vincent wrote “Sometimes I long so much to do landscape, just as one would for a long walk to refresh oneself, and in all of nature, in trees for instance, I see expression and a soul, as it were.”

But to van Gogh, the vivid vistas he captured on canvas were more than mimesis;, more than an earnest homage to the beauty of nature. There is a deeper psychological aspect to these works which mirror the mind of the artist, and which speak to us of his emotional and spiritual state.

Though he was the quintessential tortured soul, the landscape – be it natural or man-made; a town, city or field – offered a kind of maternal womb that he could retreat to, and which imbued him with hope in the face of otherwise suffering or violence.

The landscape was rich in moods and emotions, which he observed with the assiduous eye of an impressionist but transformed with his introspective boldness. His surroundings were moments to decipher and through which to probe his feelings. The emotional resonance of such works as Starry Night – one of his best known and most popular pieces of art – express this synthesis between the inanimate and anima perfectly. Painted while resident at a mental hospital in Saint-Rémy-de-Provenc in 1889, the clear, star-lit sky can be viewed as an expression of the artist’s faith in the overarching peace of the universe and as an escape – if only temporarily – from the mental shackles that weighed so heavily upon him.

Vincent Van Gogh: the Ambiguity of Insanity by Giuseppe Cafiero is out now as an audiobook on Amazon, and iTunes

About the Book

: Vincent Van Gogh: The Ambiguity of Insanity

Author: Giuseppe Cafiero

An abrasive itinerary of the presence of women, the landscape and obsession. Such are the internal paradigms that went through the compelling life of the Post-Impressionist painter Vincent van Gogh.
Not flesh and blood women, but the woman as a guide: Mrs. Jones, the woman as a mother; Kee Vos; Christine Hoornik of Siena; Margot Begemann. The Portrait-women such as Augustine Roulin and Madame Ginoux. And then the backgrounds, endless, unforgettable in this genius’s works: Isleworth, Amsterdam, le Borinage, Arles, St. Remy, Auvers-sur-Oise, where Vincent van Gogh spent his life trying to capture the colors, the atmosphere, the light.

The pain of finitude and his obsession with achieving redemption through art, with intimate and stormy religiosity, with brotherly love, with the French noon sun and, in short, with death. A hard-working and unwavering life where art interacted, in a painful gesture, with the iron will of a hand that never lost its way.

The life of a beloved and devoted man, silenced by the anguish and despair of creation, who could only find peacefulness when he found his own death.

Vincent Van Gogh: the Ambiguity of Insanity is a fictionalized biography and gripping novel of the life of the Nineteenth-Century Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh. The author, Giuseppe Cafiero, draws a psychological portrait of the Post-Impressionist painter through the women that marked his life and the cities in which he lived.

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