Vincent Van Gogh A Group of Cottages
Vincent Van Gogh's stunning and turbulent canvas A Group of Cottages was painted in May 1890, just a short time from his reported suicide. Having recently left the asylum at Saint Remy, the artist travelled to Auvers-sur-Oise, a quaint town just a few miles north of Paris, and remained there under the watchful eye of Dr Gachet, with whom he had entrusted his mental health. Currently kept in the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, the painting was part of the collection of Sergei Shchukin which was nationalized after the October Revolution . It was first exposed to the public in Moscow between 1919 to 1929, in what was then the Western Museum of Modern Art, before joining the collection of the State Hermitage Museum in 1948. It is a stunning document of the inner workings of the artist's mind at this tragic point in his life, and reflects the dramatic intensity that the artist felt reflected in the surrounding countryside.
A Group of Cottages can be documented closely through a reference in the artist's correspondence to the canvas, mentioned to his brother in a letter on the 21 May 1890. It seems the artist captured the scene almost as soon as he arrived in the town. For Van Gogh it was simply a study of the thatched roofs of a few scenic dwellings, but posthumously it would reveal the depth of the artist's torment and his desperate attempts at seeking respite in his work. The canvas was among over twenty works completed upon the artist's arrival in Auvers on the 20th May to the end of the month. What emerges straight away is a body of work resplendent in the joyous colours of the coming summer, imbued with a sense of hope for rebirth that many have later identified as a sense of foreboding and fear. Certainly, many of his works of this period reflect the turbulence of his mental state, yet one can also fi d in them the pleasures of a man who sought in his art sanctuary and respite.
Filled with idiosyncratic qualities that have come to personify the artist's time in Auvers, A Group of Cottages warps, manipulates, and shapes the rolling terrain to conform not to any sense of visual logic but to an internal order that reflected the artist's heightened sense of colour and the movements of nature.
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Gallery Price: $635.00
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