The letters of Vincent Van Gogh

Exhibition comes to London, January 2010

Vincent Van Gogh lived for only 37 years. It seems an absurdly short time in which to fit the creation of so many masterpieces, and not just masterpieces of art. Despite his reputation as an unstable genius, Van Gogh's voluminous correspondence shows him to be a writer of great insight. At the heart of any understanding of his art, is the famous exchange of letters with his brother Theo, many of which contain sketches for the paintings he was working on. This is a priceless record of his working process and development as a painter.

An exhibition of the letters opened recently at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam and will travel to the Royal Academy in London in the New Year. Many of the letters are so fragile that they cannot be displayed – only the sturdier examples will be shown. Over the past 15 years, a team at the Van Gogh Museum has carefully transcribed and edited all the letters, subjecting them to an incredibly thorough annotation to trace Van Gogh's allusions to art, religion and literature. Many are translated into English for the first time and some are recent discoveries.

These letters now form a magnificent new six-volume edition published by Thames & Hudson - Vincent Van Gogh: The Letters – fully annotated and illustrated it provides an unrivalled insight to the man and artist. Jackie Wullschlager of the Financial Times calls it, ‘the most important art publication of 2009, if not of the entire decade’. For Folio members who appreciate Van Gogh’s brilliance, keep note that we plan to offer the full set to our members in January - at a very attractive discount.

Van Gogh’s Letters: The Artist Speaks is at the Van Gogh Museum from October 9th to January 3rd, 2010, and at the Royal Academy in London from January 23rd to April 18th, 2010. For more information or to book tickets you can link through here.

last modified: Mon, Sep 12th 2011Bookmark and Share
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