I am off to Paris in a few weeks and what a better way to get into the French spirit than visiting a Parisian bakery and also admiring the works of Vincent Van Gogh, none other than here in London.
Until the end of November the Eykyn Maclean private gallery will be showing a collection of Van Gogh’s work from his time in Paris. The exhibition explores some of the paintings from 1886 to 1888 when he lived and worked in Paris and also became friends/acquaintances with some of the other great artists of that time including Monet, Pissarro, Toulouse-Lautrec and Gauguin, which also helped him develop his own unique style.
I visited the exhibition this week and it was amazing to see some of his works, considering these are mainly from private collections. Highlights include this self-portrait from the Gemeentemuseum in The Hague, which captures the strong colour in his beard and the intensity of his gaze which is seen in later portraits.
Vincent van Gogh, Self-portrait, December 1886–January 1887
Oil on canvas,45 x 35.5 cm, Collection Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, The Hague
Another stood out for me is the pair of shoes, it is one of the most iconic still-life images from this period. There are five canvases of this painting and this is the only one that remains in private hands.
Vincent van Gogh, A Pair of Shoes, One Shoe Upside Down, autumn 1886
Oil on canvas, 37.5 x 45.5 cm, Private collection
Vincent van Gogh, Fortifications of Paris with Houses, summer 1887,
Pencil, black chalk, watercolour and gouache on grey paper
39.5 x 53.5 cm, The Whitworth Art Gallery, University of Manchester
Alongside the Van Gogh paintings there is also work from the artists he kept in good company with. I loved this Claude Monet, View of Bennecourt, the colours are beautiful.
Claude Monet, View of Bennecourt, 1887
Oil on canvas, 81.6 x 81.6 cm
Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio. Gift of Howard D. and Babette L. Sirak, the Donors to the Campaign for Enduring Excellence, and the Derby Fund
Van Gogh in Paris is at Eykyn Maclean, London, 26 Sept – 29 Nov 2013. Admission free, booking essential at www.eykynmaclean.com