Vincent Van Gogh Essay Research Paper Gjikondi

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Vincent Van Gogh Essay, Research Paper Gjikondi 1 Eldorado Gjikondi Instructor: Theresa Joseph English 101 March 29, 2000 VAN GOGH Art is a severe Goddess, who in return for her smiles demands many sacrifices. No one did more to please her, and no one was so insufficiently rewarded as Van Gogh. Several times the blows that she dealt him were painful enough to make any reasonable man resign. Only fanaticism and faith in her would permit one to leap the abyss between reality and desire. With cruel, merciless method, art asked from Van Gogh everything. It was a loan that multiplied with time and was never paid back. It haunted him within the recesses of his soul, it flirted with him and raises his hopes, it took away from him everything that was dear, and when it could finally

take no more, it decided to take his life. Vincent Van Gogh was born on 30 March 1853 in the small village of Groot-Zundert, Holland, to Theodorus Van Gogh and Anna Cornelia. He had a normal childhood and was in no way distinguished from his peers by any uncommon character traits. At the age of 16 he was apprenticed to Goupil & Cie, art dealers from Paris with a branch established in Hague by his uncle Vincent. The working place afforded him enough time to become acquainted with the classical painting masters and the different schools of painting at that time. Because of his extreme honesty, he was considered a poor salesman and the company chose to Gjikondi 2 transfer him to the London branch. The change did not improve his standing and soon enough he exchanged the clerical

position for that of a pastor. He was sent to Borinage, a coal-mining district in Belgium. Van Gogh thought he had finally found his vocation. He was an educated man amongst the illiterate miners and their families. Ironically enough, he found more virtue, patience, and holiness among this class than the educated, upper classes. His overzealous attempts to preach were cut short from a visit by his superiors. They were much surprised that a member of the church would live in such shabby dwellings as his, and dress in such poor clothes that could not distinguish him from the masses. He was instantly dismissed. It was a painful blow, the effects of which he felt for a long time afterwards. The church closed its doors to the young man. Business had abandoned him already. What else

could remain but the domain of art, in which the passionate seems to thrive always. His interest in painting revived. He had drawn some small sketches while still in Borinage and shown them to his brother Theo. Theodore, unlike his older brother, had made a success of himself and had been constantly improving his economical status. He decided to support the fledgling artist. The decision marked a turning point in Van Gogh’s life. It helped him to become financially secure and it lifted the economical burden off his shoulders. He could finally devote himself to painting without any concerns about money. He settled close to his parents, in Brabant. He started painting extensively and chose his subjects among the peasants that lived around Brabant. Then, as in later life, he

always preferred the poor rather than the rich, the simple rather than the sophisticated. His first important painting Gjikondi 3 was to be the Potato Eaters. “Every night he went back to the De Groots. He worked until they were too sleepy to sit up any longer. Each night he tried new combinations of colors, different values and proportions; and each day he saw that he had missed, that his work was incomplete” (Stone 286). For 12 days the painter struggled to depict the essence of these simple and poor folk whom he loved tenderly. For 12 entire days he revised, corrected, reasoned, and observed and yet, canvas after canvas were destroyed after he had seen them in the sober light of the day. He painted the De Groots during the final evening, before he would leave for Paris,