Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Vincent "The Man" van Gogh

Is it just me or do van Gogh's trees seem "haunted?" Maybe it's because of how the massive roots and trunks in this painting dwarf the parallel-leaning, doll-like figure!

Look how the trunks in this oddly aligned trio seem to want to lift themselves right out of the ground by their roots. To do what??

File these branches under "wildly gesticulating." One gets the impression of a clawing at the air, frantic branches twisting left, right, and above. These blossoming trees seem electric, too, full of the ungovernable energy of the universe. You can almost hear the synapses crackling in van Gogh's brain as he painted them ...

This, apparently, is the only painting he's believed to have sold in his lifetime.


  1. Christopher- those three dark (and I assume earlier) Van Goghs are all new to me and are very moving. Thanks so much for sharing them. Van Gogh certainly was one of the people who really looked at trees long and hard. He found their wildness.

  2. Thanks for stopping by. Your blog is very interesting and thought provoking. I found myself searching all over the internet chasing names and ideas you put forth.

    I've never seen the Van Gogh that sold. Interesting. I do like the second posted. Yes I believe a haunting, disturbed man comes through in his work.

  3. Any idea where those first 'haunted' trees stood? The second tree-painting (with older girl) was painted by Van Gogh in 1882 at the time he was in the Netherlands (were these trees from the Dutch province of Drenthe?). I wish I knew if these 'haunted' trees were Dutch. The Hague (area) were van Gogh was around 1882 has large trees, but this large? Drenthe has large trees, but again, this huge? Interesting.

  4. Thanks, Mindful, for the info on the second tree painting! I would appreciate any other information on these. All I have are the images and no idea anymore where they came from.

  5. It took me some time but I found a little bit more information: Girl in the Woods, Oil on panel, 35.0 x 47.0 cm. The Hague: August, 1882.
    Here is the internet-source: http://www.vggallery.com/painting/p_0008a.htm
    I hope it is reliable information.
    According to this information Van Gogh painted it in his The Hague years. Most of the woodlands in that area are now gone.

  6. A very interesting post. Being a fan of both Andrew Wyeth and Van Gogh your comments on Van
    gogh's trees inspired me to go back and study once again Wyeth's painting of trees and how they compared to Van Gogh's work. There is more than a vague similarity. Like Van Gogh's, Wyeth's also seem to be "hauntingly" alive. Look at Wyeth's branches and his roots along side of Van Gogh's. Thanks for your comments. I find many of your posts thought provoking. -Rick

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