Today i want to write about a man who i only recently found out who really is. Ive always known his name, and now i think everyone should know this mans story.

We know him as Vincent van Gogh, the famous painter who painted "Starry Night", which is one of the most famous paintings in the world. But did you know that Vincent was not famous at all in his lifetime and suffered from a very troubled mind?

art, van gogh, and starry night image

This is a very sad story, but its a story worth knowing. Vincent was born in Holland in 1853. As a teenager he had trouble seeing the meaning of life(well, this is normal for a teenager), and was very quiet and serious. After leaving college which he described as "gloomy, cold and sterile", and we get a glimpse into Vincent troubled and intense mind.

art, vincent van gogh, and van gogh image

Like a lot of artists, Vincent wanted to leave something of great significance behind for the world. So he became an artist. You have to realize that in those days, one couldn´t just become an artist, you had to have an education for it. People would simply not buy works from an amateur, but Vincent felt he had something special. Earlier in life Vincent did not get support of his paintings from his parents, and his mother would sometimes just laugh at them. So its quite understandable that Vincent had an insecurety on his abilities.

Vincent painted a large amount of paintings; hundreds of orignial and brilliant original works, a type that had not yet been seen at that time. Yet, he was ignored by the art community.

He had travelled to Paris by the end of 1886, falling in love with a lot of great artists like Pissarro, Monet and Bernard. He did also have a very close relationship with an artist called Gauguin, and they moved out of Paris by 1888 and set up their own studio in Arles.

aesthetic, art, and artsy image

It was here that he painted his trademark works. They painted together for a few months, but then things startet to go bad. We now know that Vincent suffered various types of epilepsy, psychotic attacks and chronic delusions.

  • Vincent was Bi Polar, his enthuasim always followed with depression.
  • He suffered from manic depression.
  • He also suffered from Lead poisining, madness is a by product of this. His doctor at the time noted that during his psychotic attacks, Vincent would eat paint and drink kerosene to self harm. An interesting fact is that one of the effects of lead poisoning is swelling of the retinas which can cause one to see light in circles. Maybe thats the inspiration from "Starry Night"?
van gogh image

Vincent committed himself to a mental asylum at the end of his life. He continued painting, but he couldnt paint for too long without having an attack. He did however finish his most famous work in the asylum, "Starry Night".

On July 27, Vincent took his life. He shot himself in the stomach in a wheat field where he had painted the day before.

quotes, vincent van gogh, and flowers image

In his lifetime he sold one of his paitings of 900. After his death, he became one of the most famous painters in the entire world and his paintings is worth millions of dollars. I cannot even describe how sad this makes me, knowing he suffered so much his entire life, without getting any recognition for his work. But he still kept on going till the end.

quotes, vincent van gogh, and art image

I thank you if you read all of this, this is a story worth knowing. A great and strong man who made beautiful art, and wasnt famous until after his death. He is now one of my favourite artists of all time, not just because of his great art but because he is an inspiration to everyone who suffer.

At the very end I want to share the lyrics of a song dedicated to Vincent, called "Vincent" written by Don Mclean. Ellie Goulding has recently covered this song, you should definately listen.

Starry night
Paint your palette blue and grey

Look out on a summer's day
With eyes that know the
Darkness in my soul.
Shadows on the hills
Sketch the trees and the daffodils

Catch the breeze and the winter chills

In colors on the snowy linen land.
And now I understand what you tried to say to me

How you suffered for your sanity
How you tried to set them free.
They would not listen
They did not know how

Perhaps they'll listen now.

Starry night
Flaming flo'rs that brightly blaze

Swirling clouds in violet haze reflect in
Vincent's eyes of China blue.
Colors changing hue
Morning fields of amber grain

Weathered faces lined in pain
Are soothed beneath the artist's
Loving hand.
And now I understand what you tried to say to me

How you suffered for your sanity
How you tried to set them free.
Perhaps they'll listen now.

For they could not love you
But still your love was true

And when no hope was left in sight on that starry

Starry night.
You took your life
As lovers often do;
But I could have told you
This world was never
Meant for one
As beautiful as you.

Starry night
Portraits hung in empty halls

Frameless heads on nameless walls
With eyes
That watch the world and can't forget.
Like the stranger that you've met

The ragged men in ragged clothes

The silver thorn of bloody rose
Lie crushed and broken
On the virgin snow.
And now I think I know what you tried to say to me

How you suffered for your sanity

How you tried to set them free.
They would not listen
They're not
List'ning still
Perhaps they never will.