September 4, 2008

Vincent van Gogh's "Bedroom in Arles" Real Life and Digital Recreations

Dutch master of impressionism Vincent van Gogh doesn't need a lot of introduction; just about everyone has heard of van Gogh, his incredible genius and his tragic demise.

Bedroom in Arles is one of van Gogh's best known masterpieces. But what is not as well known is the fact that there are 3 authentic versions of the painting in existence. The 3 versions are pretty similar in their depictions but they can be easily told apart by many different details such as the small room's floor configuration and color scheme, the details on the paintings hung on the wall to the right, and the walls' colors.

"Bedroom in Arles (French: La Chambre à butts; Dutch: Slaapkamer te Arles) is the title given to each of three similar paintings by 19th-century Dutch Post-Impressionist painter Vincent van Gogh".

Van Gogh's own title for this composition was simply The Bedroom (French: La Chambre à coucher). There are three authentic versions described in his letters, easily discernible from one another by the pictures on the wall to the right" says Wikipedia.

Bedroom in Arles, 1888 (First Version) Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam

Bedroom in Arles, 1889 (Second Version)Art Institute of Chicago

Bedroom in Arles,1889 (Third Version)Musée d'Orsay

The video below skillfully dissects Bedroom in Arles. It is narrated in Spanish but it is still very interesting to watch even if you don't understand the language.

Vincent wrote to his brother Theo in reference to the first version: "This time it simply reproduces my bedroom; but colour must be abundant in this part, its simplification adding a rank of grandee to the style applied to the objects, getting to suggest a certain rest or dream. Well, I have thought that on watching the composition we stop thinking and imagining. I have painted the walls pale violet. The ground with checked material. The wooden bed and the chairs, yellow like fresh butter; the sheet and the pillows, lemon light green. The bedspread, scarlet coloured. The window, green. The washbasin, orangey; the tank, blue. The doors, lilac. And, that is all. There is not anything else in this room with closed shutters. The square pieces of furniture must express unswerving rest; also the portraits on the wall, the mirror, the bottle, and some costumes. The white colour has not been applied to the picture, so its frame will be white, aimed to get me even with the compulsory rest recommended for me. I have depicted no type of shade or shadow; I have only applied simple plain colours, like those in crêpes."[2] Wikipedia Check out this fascinating real life recreation of van Gogh's Bedroom in Arles Courtesy of YouTube


  1. awesome!
    look this, van gogh real!

  2. Pablo this is really awesome! Thanks a lot. Gracias. Obrigada.

  3. great blog, I have never commented on these blogs.


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