About the Bedroom by Vincent Van Gogh

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In search of a work of art, I went to the Art Institute in Chicago. Many works of art have made a great impression on me. However, I chose The Bedroom by Vincent van Gogh. This painting aroused some uneasiness and curiosity of colors in me.

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“About the Bedroom by Vincent Van Gogh”

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Vincent van Gogh was born in 1853 in a small Dutch village. Initially, he learned at home under the tutelage of a governess, but in 1864 he had to go to a boarding school. Parting with his family was a traumatic experience for an eleven-year-old boy who left a mark in his psyche for life. When he turned 26, he went to The Hague, where he started working at the Goupil & Co. art gallery. In 1873, he was transferred to a branch in London, where he met Eugenie Loyer. He fell in love with her and asked for a hand, but he was rejected. It was another blow that intensified his sense of loneliness. He went to Paris with the will of his father, but personal troubles affected his work and quickly lost his post in the gallery. At this time, van Gogh discovers a religious vocation, becomes a zealous follower of the early Christianity and begins to study theology. He fails to complete his studies, and subsequent failures in his personal life depress him. When the religious fervor of Van Gogh diminishes, the need to create is born. However, financial problems made it impossible for him to undertake further studies, eventually forced him to return to his family home. Inspired by the works of Jean-Francois Millet, he created his first works. His paintings gained recognition and he was fortunate for success, unfortunately his streak did not apply to his personal life. Another unhappy love made him despair. Conflicted with his father, he left his family home and went to The Hague to study painting from Anton Mauve. In 1882, Van Gogh’s relationship with Sien Hoornik, a former prostitute whom he met in The Hague, began. Already in September 1883, the artist went to Drenthe, again lonely and unhappy, because he broke up with his lover and quarreled with Mauv. Shortly after, the lack of money forced him to return to his parents. At home he worked very intensively, his works most often depict village scenes and peasants during everyday activities. After his father’s death, Vincent left again, this time to Antwerp, where he studied for only a month at the Academy of Fine Arts. Conflicted with professors, he left the university and went to Paris, his brother, Theo, stayed there. He was closely connected with his brother and thanks to him he met Russell, Lautrec, Pissarra and Gauguin. In the works from this period, and there are over 200, you can see some influence of Impressionism. In Paris, van Gogh was less than two years old, tired of the great city he went to Arles. He continued to work very intensively, created numerous landscapes, self-portraits, interiors, flowers (also the famous “Sunflowers”). In Arles Gauguin visited him. During the two months they spent together, there were many quarrels and violent scenes. One of them has become a legend. The agitated van Gogh first threatened Gauguin with a razor, and finally he cut off his ear and carried it to the local house of amusement. After this incident, the artist went to a psychiatric hospital. At the beginning of the next year, Albert Aurier published a positive review of van Gogh’s work in Paris. The painter spent the last months of his life in Auvers under the supervision of Dr. Gachet. For seventy days he painted over seventy paintings, including many outstanding ones. Vincent van Gogh died on July 29, 1890, two days after the suicide attempt. He was 37 at the time. Van Gogh’s work is usually referred to as Post-Impressionist, although in his rich output there are various tendencies. The artist sold only one of his work. Today he is considered one of the most outstanding painters in the history of art, and his work has had a significant impact on 20th century painting. During the seven years of creative van Gogh’s work, he managed to create 870 paintings, 150 watercolors and numerous drawings and sketches. In Arles he discovered the beauty of strong light and vivid colors, it was there that the famous “Sunflowers” were created. This motif returned many times on van Gogh’s paintings. Repeating the same elements is a characteristic feature of the artist’s work. He created a study of peasant faces. Another important group of works are self-portraits, olive groves and cypresses. The last works of the painter are more dynamic and expressive. Landscapes become a manifestation of the artist’s feelings and mental states, sometimes they express fear, and sometimes they bring peace of mind. Strange twisted trees, circles in the evening sky create a sense of static motion of the scene.

Vincent van Gogh was one of the most outstanding expressionists. Like most artists, he was not appreciated in his lifetime. Hardly making ends meet, he traveled the world and corresponded with his brother Theo. Looking at Vincent’s works, we see a peculiar process that was taking place in his mind. Love for painting became more and more mixed with depression and madness. Where the artist intended to show peace, shadow and doubt crept in. Van Gogh not only painted yellow sunflowers. His passion for vivid colors was also visible in other paintings, one of them being the Artist’s Room or else the Empty Room. Vincent painted this picture three times, thanks to which today we can admire him in Chicago, Paris and Amsterdam. The first version was created in 1888, while Van Gogh came to Arles – a small town in Provence. The artist ultimately wants to get to Marseilles, but Arles delights him enough that he stays there longer. As he wrote in a letter to his brother, he was attracted by clean air and vivid colors. To capture the impression of peace and harmony, Vincent paints the Artist’s Room. The room in the picture is just the room in which Van Gogh lived. The interior is minimalistic, almost ascetic. Shortly after painting, the work is slightly damaged during transport. Therefore, Vincent creates in 1889 two more versions of the painting. Although each of them is similar, subtle differences can be noticed between them, especially in the colors, arrangement of some objects or in other details.

Van Gogh does not present a traditional perspective in this picture, all the furniture and walls of the artist’s bedroom seem to be inclined towards the viewer. Also in the later works of the artist, one can see a break with the traditional perspective. Distortion of reality is visible in this van Gogh painting, such deformations were most often aimed at shedding on the canvas the sensation that the object under observation evoked in the painter. Often called van Gogh the precursor of expressionism, and indeed his paintings seem to recreate its interior, rather than real reality, this is just a pretext to pour into the canvas of their own emotional states, which aroused in the artist surrounding the world. The floor is painted with long brush strokes, not all staves are of the same color. The predominant color is red, sometimes in pink. The walls are in a rather strange shade, which stands between light blue and light purple. The angles between the walls are marked with a dark blue color, passing at times to dark green. Its colors, and at the same time the way they have been imposed give the impression that the interior lives its own life, and the objects filling them do not beat the expected static, but the dynamism. He is one of many unusual paintings of this outstanding, unusual painter who revolutionized painting by creating his own recognizable style. Clear outlines, all objects depicted in the picture have very clearly marked black outlines – in fact, we do not see such lines when looking at a bed or a chair. This is another way of choosing a color to show the intensity of the artist’s experience. Here everything is clear until it is visible. Intense color of the walls. It does not calm down at all, on the contrary, it introduces a certain anxiety. Because the painter was full of anxiety when he created his painting. The other colors also do not seem real, they are too intense, saturated. Bury color towel hanging on the wall, brown furniture. The painter, by impregnating the image with color, wanted to reflect the intensity of his experiences. The perspective is clearly marked by converging lines on the floor, the bed frame, the door line. Two chairs are one person’s bedroom, but there are two chairs, as well as two paintings on the walls and even two pillows. In this way, Van Gogh made it clear that he was missing a loved one. Despite the assumed atmosphere of calm to emanate from the image, the final shape of the work does not cause the announced effect. Objects stand disorderly in each other, and each of them seems to be isolated from the others. Disturbing are the shortening of objects, the bent floor, as if it was about to collapse, skewed furniture, crooked pictures hanging on the wall. This ambiguous atmosphere creates a visible tension between Van Gogh’s inner longing for a safe and cozy home, the reality of which he was unable to give him, a loneliness, a sense of abandonment and alienation that was stronger.

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About The Bedroom by Vincent van Gogh. (2019, Dec 24). Retrieved December 10, 2022 , from

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