who made the starry night painting
Interpretations about the meaning of The Starry Night fall pretty divide into two trains of thought. First, that it was a message of hope; although things may appear dark, there will always be something to light the darkness. To expand on this вЂpositiveвЂ™ interpretation, it has also been said that The Starry Night could be symbolic of Van Gogh becoming at peace with the idea of death and accepting his ascension into heaven.
- Photo of Van Gogh
- Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear
‘Look, I have had another dream’ he said, ‘I thought I saw the sun, the moon and eleven stars, bowing to me.’
Starry Night was painted while Vincent was in the asylum at Saint-Rйmy and his behaviour was very erratic at the time, due to the severity of his attacks. Unlike most of Van Gogh’s works, Starry Night was painted from memory and not outdoors as was Vincent’s preference. This may, in part, explain why the emotional impact of the work is so much more powerful than many of Van Gogh’s other works from the same period.
Starry Night is one of the most recognized pieces of art in the world. It is absolutely everywhere, too. It can be seen on coffee, mugs, t-shirts, towels, magnets, etc. Honestly, it sometimes feels as if the painting’s fame has exceeded that of its creator. It is a magnificent piece of art. That Starry Night resonates with so many people is a testament to how its beauty is timeless and universal.
Vincent van Gogh painted Starry Night in 1889 during his stay at the asylum of Saint-Paul-de-Mausole near Saint-Rémy-de-Provence. Van Gogh lived well in the hospital; he was allowed more freedoms than any of the other patients. If attended, he could leave the hospital grounds; he was allowed to paint, read, and withdraw into his own room. He was even given a studio. While he suffered from the occasional relapse into paranoia and fits – officially he had been diagnosed with epileptic fits – it seemed his mental health was recovering.
Unfortunately, he relapsed. He began to suffer hallucination and have thoughts of suicide as he plunged into depression. Accordingly, there was a tonal shift in his work. He returned to incorporating the darker colors from the beginning of his career and Starry Night is a wonderful example of that shift. Blue dominates the painting, blending hills into the sky. The little village lays at the base in the painting in browns, greys, and blues. Even though each building is clearly outlined in black, the yellow and white of the stars and the moon stand out against the sky, drawing the eyes to the sky. They are the big attention grabber of the painting.
Largely self-taught, van Gogh produced more than 2,000 oil paintings, watercolors, drawings, and sketches, which became in demand only after his death. He also wrote scores of letters, especially to his brother Theo, in which he worked out his thoughts about art. вЂњAlways continue walking a lot and loving nature, for thatвЂ™s the real way to learn to understand art better and better,вЂќ he wrote in 1874. вЂњPainters understand nature and love it, and teach us to see.вЂќ 1
1889. Oil on canvas, 29 x 36 1/4″ (73.7 x 92.1 cm)
Interpretations of this painting are legion. Some claim it is a perfectly realistic account of the position of the stars in June 1889. This, needless to say, is perfectly possible. But the twisting, spiralling lines have nothing to do with the Northern Lights or the Milky Way or some spiral nebula or other. Others say that van Gogh was expressing a personal Gethsemane; they back this up by referring to the discussion of Christ on the Mount of Olives that he was currently engaged in, in his correspondence with Gauguin and Bernard. This too may be so; it is possible that premonitions of sufferings to come are articulated in the picture. But Biblical allegory is present throughout van Gogh’s oeuvre, and he had no need of a special motif, least of all a starry sky, with all its associations of Arles and Utopian visions. Rather, van Gogh was trying to summarize; and his resume juxtaposed natural, scientific, philosophical and personal elements. Starry Night is an attempt to express a state of shock, and the cypresses, olive trees and mountains had acted as van Gogh’s catalyst. More intensely, perhaps, than ever before, van Gogh was interested in the material actuality of his motifs as much as in their symbolic dimensions.
5) Analysts of “Starry Night” emphasize the symbolism of the stylized cypress tree in the foreground, linking it to death and Van Gogh’s eventual suicide. However, the cypress also represents immortality. In the painting, the tree reaches into the sky, serving as a direct connection between the earth and the heavens. The artist may have been making more of a hopeful statement than many credit him with. This positive interpretation of the cypress symbolism hearkens back to a letter to his brother in which the artist likened death to a train that travels to the stars.