ABOUT THE ROAD TRIP SERIES:
‘IN YOUR FOOTSTEPS:
WHAT VINCENT VAN GOGH SAW’
Introduction to my series about the living and working places of the painter Vincent van Gogh.
I cannot explain exactly why I suddenly felt so strongly the urge to follow in the footsteps of the famous painter Vincent van Gogh. No, not to paint but to be there, to breathe and to walk where he walked and once stayed. Where he painted and suffered. Where he breathed his last and is buried, near to his beloved brother Theo. To feel and cherish Vincent very close to me in one way or another. In 2018-2019 I found myself in a period in my life where I was struggling with depression and intense grief.
Printing from stone
Dear Vincent, have I ever liked your work? To be honest, until recently I didn’t think it was that special. When I had seen the Dutch AVROTROS television series ‘(Jeroen)Krabbé seeks van Gogh’, something slowly started to awaken me. An intense feeling of pain arose in my body. A few years earlier, I had compiled a video program on behalf of the Dutch Museum of Lithography in Valkenswaard about the only lithograph (stone print) that Vincent made of the Potato Eaters. Then I did not feel that urge at all. As noted, I did not think Van Gogh was that special. You like his art or you don’t.
Vincent so close
After seeing the TV series I felt an increasingly restless feeling. The next day I fetched books from the library about Vincent’s work and the lovely correspondence between him and his brother Theo. I saw DVD’s about his life and work… I just had to go to all those places where Vincent once was and worked. To Nuenen, Zundert, Bergen/Mons, Paris, Arles, St Remy de Provence,
you name it… I got behind the wheel of my car and left! Believe it or not, I felt so very close to Vincent, that it sometimes moved me to tears….
IN YOUR FOOTSTEPS:
‘WHAT VINCENT VAN GOGH SAW’
I invite you to read my next blog that will take you to the Belgian Borinage where Vincent van Gogh stayed for two years …