Today the World knows Vincent Van Gogh as a Dutch Post-Impressionist Painter and one of the most famous and influential figures in the history of Western Art. However, he was hardly known during his short life of 37 years and only became famous after his death. During his adult life, he tried many different professions and not successful in any of them. He only became an artist at the age of 27 and completed a stunning 2,100 artworks in little over 10 years, much more an artist completes in a much longer life span.
Van Gogh’s life is documented through the letters he wrote to his brother Theo, who was also a close friend. He wrote almost 800 letters throughout his lifetime to his brother and other friends. One of his closest friends was the Painter Paul Gauguin. Even though their styles were different, they painted together. Van Gogh faced financial problems throughout his life, it is an irony that one of his most famous paintings “Portrait of doctor Gachet” was sold for $82.5 million in 1990. His commercial success was so limited that he achieved to sell only one painting throughout his lifetime.
Van Gogh’s work and painting style has been greatly influenced by where he lived across Europe. He embraced local cultures and represented the landscape and people in his paintings. He is also well known for his series of portraits, including self-portraits. He is said to have painted 43 self-portraits representing his various moods and costumes. Throughout his life Van Gogh had psychological issues and spent a lot of time in hospitals. It is quite incredible that a person with such mental and financial issues was able to create some of the finest paintings the world has ever seen. Maybe that is why it is said that there is a fine line between madness and genius.