Letters of Vincent Van Gogh

Posted: October 29, 2013 in Book Reviews
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This book about Vincent Van Gogh was a revelation of sorts…gave an insight into the mind of a brilliant genius who was afflicted with a mental illness that was beyond his control.  He was a sensitive man misunderstood my several people with problems in his inter-personal relationships but brought forth the most beautiful paintings his mind could imagine…

‘The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh’ is a collection of letters arranged in chronological order written to his close confidant , his brother Theo. Collected and edited by historian Mark Roskill, this volume also includes a chronology, a short memoir by van Gogh’s sister-in-law that fills in many of the blanks in his life. His sensitive nature, intensity during his painting sessions and analysis of situations, nature and sufferings of people could not be understood by many.
“I have been ill, my mind was tired, my soul disillusioned and my body suffering. I whom God has endowed at least with moral energy and a strong instinct of affection, I fell in the abyss of the most bitter discouragement and I felt with horror how a deadly poison penetrated my stifled heart. I spent three months on the moors, you know that beautiful region where the soul retires within itself and enjoys a delicious rest where everything calm and peace…

So I passed my days of illness… and then in the evening! To be seated before the big fireplace with one’s feet in the ashes, one’s eyes fixed on a star that sends its ray through the opening in the chimney as if to call me, or absorbed in vague dreams too much to look at the fire, to see the flames rise, flicker, and supplant one another as desirous to lick the kettle with their tongues of fire, and to think that such is human life: to be born, to work, to love, to grow and to disappear”

~Van Gogh


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