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Van Gogh and the Artists He Loved

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The compelling story of how Vincent van Gogh developed his audacious, iconic style by immersing himself in the work of others, featuring hundreds of paintings by Van Gogh as well as the artists who inspired him--from the New York Times bestselling co-author of Van Gogh: The Life. Vincent van Gogh's paintings look utterly unique--his vivid palette and boldly interpretive por The compelling story of how Vincent van Gogh developed his audacious, iconic style by immersing himself in the work of others, featuring hundreds of paintings by Van Gogh as well as the artists who inspired him--from the New York Times bestselling co-author of Van Gogh: The Life. Vincent van Gogh's paintings look utterly unique--his vivid palette and boldly interpretive portraits are unmistakably his. Yet however revolutionary his style may have been, it was actually built on a strong foundation of paintings by other artists, both his contemporaries and those who came before him. Now, drawing on Van Gogh's own thoughtful and often profound comments about the painters he venerated, Steven Naifeh gives a gripping account of the artist's deep engagement with their work. We see Van Gogh's gradual discovery of the subjects he would make famous, from wheat fields to sunflowers. We watch him experimenting with the loose brushwork and bright colors used by Édouard Manet, studying the Pointillist dots used by Georges Seurat, and emulating the powerful depictions of the peasant farmers painted by Jean-François Millet, all vividly illustrated in nearly three hundred full-color images of works by Van Gogh and a variety of other major artists, including Claude Monet, Paul Gauguin, and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, positioned side by side. Thanks to the vast correspondence from Van Gogh to his beloved brother, Theo, Naifeh, a Pulitzer Prize winner, is able to reconstruct Van Gogh's artistic world from within. Observed in eloquent prose that is as compelling as it is authoritative, Van Gogh and the Artists He Loved enables us to share the artist's journey as he created his own daring, influential, and widely beloved body of work.


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The compelling story of how Vincent van Gogh developed his audacious, iconic style by immersing himself in the work of others, featuring hundreds of paintings by Van Gogh as well as the artists who inspired him--from the New York Times bestselling co-author of Van Gogh: The Life. Vincent van Gogh's paintings look utterly unique--his vivid palette and boldly interpretive por The compelling story of how Vincent van Gogh developed his audacious, iconic style by immersing himself in the work of others, featuring hundreds of paintings by Van Gogh as well as the artists who inspired him--from the New York Times bestselling co-author of Van Gogh: The Life. Vincent van Gogh's paintings look utterly unique--his vivid palette and boldly interpretive portraits are unmistakably his. Yet however revolutionary his style may have been, it was actually built on a strong foundation of paintings by other artists, both his contemporaries and those who came before him. Now, drawing on Van Gogh's own thoughtful and often profound comments about the painters he venerated, Steven Naifeh gives a gripping account of the artist's deep engagement with their work. We see Van Gogh's gradual discovery of the subjects he would make famous, from wheat fields to sunflowers. We watch him experimenting with the loose brushwork and bright colors used by Édouard Manet, studying the Pointillist dots used by Georges Seurat, and emulating the powerful depictions of the peasant farmers painted by Jean-François Millet, all vividly illustrated in nearly three hundred full-color images of works by Van Gogh and a variety of other major artists, including Claude Monet, Paul Gauguin, and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, positioned side by side. Thanks to the vast correspondence from Van Gogh to his beloved brother, Theo, Naifeh, a Pulitzer Prize winner, is able to reconstruct Van Gogh's artistic world from within. Observed in eloquent prose that is as compelling as it is authoritative, Van Gogh and the Artists He Loved enables us to share the artist's journey as he created his own daring, influential, and widely beloved body of work.

30 review for Van Gogh and the Artists He Loved

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kendall

    I got this as a giveaway book! Great insight into the life of van gogh. He is my favorite artist and Iam going ti cherish this book forever.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Julie Stielstra

    A beautiful piece of work, and a labor of love in more ways than one. Artist, art historian, and biographer Steven Naifeh has put together an opulent assemblage of chapters discussing Vincent Van Gogh's artistic influences: artists and works that delighted him, taught him, and inspired him, from academics and old masters like Gerome, Holbein, Rembrandt, and Ruisdael; through locals like his cousin Mauve and regional schools like the Barbizon painters and the Hague School; to the Impressionist, S A beautiful piece of work, and a labor of love in more ways than one. Artist, art historian, and biographer Steven Naifeh has put together an opulent assemblage of chapters discussing Vincent Van Gogh's artistic influences: artists and works that delighted him, taught him, and inspired him, from academics and old masters like Gerome, Holbein, Rembrandt, and Ruisdael; through locals like his cousin Mauve and regional schools like the Barbizon painters and the Hague School; to the Impressionist, Symbolist, Cloisonnist and other contemporaries like Gauguin, Lautrec, Signac, and Serusier, as well as Japanese prints and English magazine illustrations. Arranged thematically, Naifeh demonstrates how these other artists influenced and dazzled Vincent in how he saw, experienced and painted human figures, flowers, landscapes, skies, seas, trees, books, and religious belief. Naifeh expertly shows us unexpected and wonderfully apt correspondences, such as Luke Fildes's poignant drawing of Charles Dickens's empty chair after his death, and Vincent's lurid armchair vacated by Gauguin after their rupture; or a Decamps "Orientalist" courtyard opposite Vincent's blazing Arles "Yellow House." Many of the gorgeous color plates are captioned with comments from Vincent himself, underlining his thoughts about them. As I paged through the book, admiring many pictures I was not familiar with, I began to notice... wait, Naifeh and his partner Gregory White Smith own this painting? And this one, and that one, and that print? Holy smoke... In a final chapter, Naifeh describes his ventures with Smith (in work, art, and life - they were together for 40 years until Smith's death from a brain tumor in 2014), in researching and writing their acclaimed biographies of Jackson Pollock and Van Gogh, and their tiptoeing into collecting. Clearly they had more money than he modestly cares to admit, but they also had taste, knowledge, and passion. So this book is also a showcase for the wonderful works they have collected. I'm also quietly glad to find someone who seems to share my furtive admiration of Gerome. (In spite of the often icky subject matter, nobody can paint sighthounds or big cats like Gerome!) Though Naifeh credits Smith with the writer's gift, his own language often sings with color and admiration. The plates are rich, plentiful, well-arranged. This volume is a pure pleasure and belongs in any art history collection.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    After reading Van Gogh: The Life, I find this book an added treat. Very Interesting, hundreds of reproductions including the works of artists that influenced him. Very nice!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ellen Woodoff

    This gorgeous book has large reproductions of many works of Van Gogh and the artists he admired. It is a remarkably researched book - a hallmark of the author. Not a redo of Van Gogh A Life, this book delves even deeper into the mind and art of the artist. Naifeh also writes about the experiences he had with husband Gregory White in building their astounding collection. I highly recommend it.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Loved this book and its format—each chapter was about an artist/art school, location, or subject that inspired Van Gogh. It has beautiful graphics, photos, and paintings, and I learned about a few new Dutch artists myself.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Vicky D.

    Beautiful,

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jenny Rekeweg

    Loved this perspective to Van Gogh’s art.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Magpie

    Logged for Kylie 2022

  9. 4 out of 5

    Pam Joseph

    Boring- but some interesting facts

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kristina

  11. 5 out of 5

    Swordblade

  12. 5 out of 5

    Monique

  13. 4 out of 5

    Holly Gillespie Hughes

  14. 5 out of 5

    Katie

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brittany B

  16. 5 out of 5

    Anna Smith

  17. 4 out of 5

    Evelyn Parker

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jay

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca Timberlake

  20. 5 out of 5

    Cathy Grogan

  21. 5 out of 5

    Shari A.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Avendee Iraq

  23. 4 out of 5

    Yolanda

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kari

  25. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Koai

  26. 4 out of 5

    Mark

  27. 5 out of 5

    DONNA Edwards

  28. 4 out of 5

    Klare Desteen

  29. 4 out of 5

    Fjain

  30. 5 out of 5

    Paul Hine

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