Saturday, December 20, 2008

Gogh's letters

Because he is famous for some "wild" art and for his mental breakdowns late in life, many are not aware of the precise and powerful mind that Vincent van Gogh had, but his letters are ample testimony to that.

He was not just an intuitive artist, he applied a lot of knowledge and thought to art, both his own and others'. For example this was the first letter I happened to look up on that site.
"Speaking of Van der Weele, I remember saying to him about the picture which he got a medal for in Amsterdam - and this contrary to the opinion of others - that I greatly appreciated his having succeeded so well in preserving the unity of STYLE despite all the different things that appeared in it, and that it really and truly was a picture, i.e. something quite different from a realistic study from nature."

I suspect Vincent was amongst the pioneers of those appreciating the importance of seeing art as being something else than skillful copying of the world.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Saturday, December 20, 2008   12 comments links to this post

12 Comments:

At 21 Dec 2008, 23:29:00, Blogger Bron said...

Well, I started to leave a comment, and it was going to be involved, and learned, witty, but I got lost in my own version of the inability to sell my art; though I feel no need to remove an ear; but, well, what if, maybe; ahhhhh, PFUI, nuts, and now I've gone to historical allusions.

Vincent's problem, is that he was a self-rightous prig, who outside of family, few could tolerate. That has nothing to do with his art. There seems to be a small connection between basic social skills and the ability to sell.

That last statement really scares me.

And where did the notion of artist as moron come from?

We may not make as much money, but we are, as a group, surely smarter than the average "Pro Athelete"?

Bron

 
At 21 Dec 2008, 23:51:00, Blogger eolake said...

To be sure Vincent did not suffer fools gladly.

I haven't heard of any general notion of artists being morons. Weirdos maybe.

 
At 22 Dec 2008, 20:38:00, Blogger Joe Dick, Ph.D. said...

Am I too much of a philistine if I say that I don't like his work? I've given it a fair chance. I've read quite a bit about him and his paintings. I just don't get what's supposed to be so special. And that's coming from a guy with a Ph.D.

 
At 22 Dec 2008, 20:42:00, Blogger eolake said...

Perfectly fine with me. Art can never be anything but subjective, and I've admitted publicly that I don't get the hullabaloo around Shakespeare, so who am I to throw stones. :-)

 
At 22 Dec 2008, 20:43:00, Blogger eolake said...

Hey, how come my blog is not on your "blogs I watch" list!? :-)

 
At 23 Dec 2008, 11:45:00, Blogger Joe Dick, Ph.D. said...

That's odd, it used to be! I can't believe I could accidentally delete it - I mean, I have a Ph.D. for fuck's sake! (Last one, really!) ;-)

 
At 23 Dec 2008, 18:36:00, Blogger Joe Dick said...

I suspect Vincent was amongst the pioneers of those appreciating the importance of seeing art as being something else than skillful copying of the world.

That's not new. Did Leonardo or Michelangelo only care about that? Pf course not. And they were two whose genius dwarfs someone like van Gogh, who is really not much better than Constable with abysmally poor technique and lacking the passion of someone like Turner.

 
At 23 Dec 2008, 20:19:00, Blogger eolake said...

"Did Leonardo or Michelangelo only care about that?"

Wel... to a large degree, yeah!

The rest of your post, fair enough, I can see that viewpoint.

 
At 24 Dec 2008, 13:33:00, Blogger Joe Dick said...

We may not make as much money, but we are, as a group, surely smarter than the average "Pro Athelete"?

Some maybe. I hope that the rambling incoherence of your post here is due to English being a second language for you.

 
At 24 Dec 2008, 13:46:00, Blogger eolake said...

Are you in asshole mode this week, Joe?

 
At 24 Dec 2008, 19:16:00, Blogger Joe Dick said...

I didn't think so. I really did find what he wrote rambling and incoherent. That combined with someone pretending to superiority over another group (I am not into sports either, but I know that not all "jocks" are stupid and certainly not all professional athletes) maybe causes me to be less charitable than I might normally be.

I'd say he was being the asshole, not me.

 
At 5 May 2011, 09:59:00, Anonymous kresil said...

that's nice letter
and how do you feel if you get osama and obama letter ?

 

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