Author(s): Martin Bailey
Living with Vincent van Gogh sets out to examine the impact of the places where Van Gogh stayed, as well as the people he lived with, on his personal life and art. What effect did his series of homes and studios have on him? And what about the impact of the landscapes and cityscapes on his drawings and paintings? The book represents a concise biography, but one seen through the lens of the places where he worked.
In Van Gogh's early adult years, as a trainee dealer in The Hague, London and Paris, he discovered the world of art, absorbing the work of both old masters and contemporary painters. Later on, as an evangelist in the Borinage, the arduous and dangerous lives of the miners inspired his early drawings. In The Hague, he tackled motifs of city life, manifesting a deep sympathy for the sufferings of the poor and elderly. After moving to the Brabant village of Nuenen, its farmers and weavers fostered his development as a portraitist.
Paris, the art capital of the world, would open his eyes to Impressionism, encouraging him to explore the use of colour. The powerful sunlight of Provence, falling on its picturesque olive groves and cypresses, led to the creation of his finest landscapes. And the open countryside around Auvers-sur-Oise, a village north of Paris, proved to be his final inspiration.
Fully illustrated, the book features artworks, archive imagery and contemporary landscape photography to provide unique insight into how the people and places of Van Gogh's life relate to his work.