Broken by Life: The Paintings of Vincent van Gogh

In his lifetime Vincent van Gogh only sold one painting. Yet today he is one of the most celebrated artists in the world, perceived by many as a genius.

The fascination with his life story is unrivalled. Because we know so much about Van Gogh’s life, there is a tendency to look for signs of the artist’s mental state in each of his works. But how much should we let our knowledge of Van Gogh’s personality affect our reading of his work?

This talk looks closely at the artist’s life in relation to his painting, and questions whether Van Gogh’s work really does reflect his changing state of mind.