Sunday night (and birth anniversary of Vincent van Gogh), The Singer Laren museum experienced a smash and grab. The museum was closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The art thieves entered through a large glass window and made off with one of van Gogh’s oil paintings. Here are some facts about the master painter and his lesser-known piece:
- Dutch post-impressionist painter Vincent van Gogh (March 30, 1853-July 29-1890) tried several careers before settling on artist. He attempted to be an art dealer, like his brother; a schoolteacher; and a preacher.
- He was self-taught and began to paint seriously at the age of 27.
- He was an avid letter-writer. He exchanged over 600 letters with his brother, Theo.
- The stolen painting, The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring 1884, represented a time when he painted about everyday life. He uses a somber earth-tone palette.
- Colors played an important role in his paintings. His favorite color to use was yellow, representing emotional health. He used yellow for sunlight, life, and God in his work.
- Vincent suffered from mental illness. He committed suicide in 1890 by shooting himself in the chest. He survived 2 days but died from an infection.
- The stolen painting measure 10×22 inches and is done in oil. Over his lifetime, he created 2,100 artworks, of which 860 were oil paintings.
- The stolen painting was on loan from the Groninger Museum.
- American couple Willian and Anna Singer own the museum the painting was stolen from.
- One of Vincent’s famous quotes: “The sadness will last forever.”
Since his paintings do not come up for auction often and fetch millions of dollars, it is highly unlikely that we will see it in any auction house publications. Hopefully, it will not be hidden in some uber-rich family’s private collection—removed from the world to experience.