8 x 10"
oil on panel
Believe it or not, and it's been my observation, that a lot of museum visitors in the Art Institute of Chicago take a quick glance at The Bedroom by Vincent van Gogh and then move on to the next painting. It baffles me. There is the exception of youngsters - they are frequently drawn to the most colorful of artworks, understandably.
The Bedroom, one of three versions van Gogh painted, is an important one - in that it's more personal. It was his space. A room he had moved into in the "Yellow House" in Arles, France. It was the first time Vincent had a home of his own. And like a lot of us, he enthusiastically painted the walls and chose his decor and painted several pieces to hang on the walls of his new bedroom. He painted the walls a lilac-blue, a brick-red on the floor boards, a yellow on the bed and chairs, an orange for his dressing table, a blue for his washbasin and trimmed the window in a dark green. He chose a pale yellow-green for his pillow cases and sheets with a deep red bedspread. As viewers, we would consider his choices of colors a bit frenzied or over-the-top maybe. To Vincent, it seemingly was heaven, a calm sanctuary he could call his own. That is why I think it's an important painting by van Gogh. He saw the world, the wheat fields, the sunflowers, the starry night sky in vivid, saturated colors that most of us don't see. That's a gift.
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