September 2020, Kensington Gardens, London
Vincent van Gogh was a Dutch post-impressionist painter & was born on 30th March 1853 and died on 29th July 1890 two days after he shot himself. He was never a commercial success and actually only sold one painting ( The Red Vineyard) for 400 francs seven months prior to his death. He failed at quite a few jobs before deciding to become a full time painter at the age of 27.
In 1886 he went to live with his younger brother Theo who was a good support to him both financially & emotionally where he met various famous artists , most notably Paul Gaugin.
Van Gogh moved to Provence in 1888 where he painted the amazing famous sunflower series. He invited Gaugin to join him but soon they were constantly arguing & in a fit of peak Van Gogh went to attack him with a razor. Full of remorse for his actions , he sliced off half of his own ear which led to the infamous self portrait of Bandaged Ear 1889.
Following this he spent the rest of his life in & out of psychiatric hospitals until his death.
His art became extremely popular following this time.
His most famous painting Dr Gachet sold in Christie’s in 1999 for $82.5 million, the highest ever price paid for any painting at auction.
Recently I visited the Van Gogh immersive experience in Kensington Gardens in London.
It was an incredibly moving & humbling experience for me. Firstly you walk through a tent with various pieces of information about his life. Following this you enter a large room with various projector points on the walls. People are invited to take a seat of if they prefer they can sit on the floor and disabled visitors are catered for too. The whole show lasts for about an hour at which point it begins again. My most favourite part was walking through a fully mirrored sunflower room where I felt an influx of immense emotion & love.
There is little gift shop at the end where you can buy prints of various VG paintings, so obviously I bought a few!!!! It is a bit pricey at £24 per ticket but we’ll worth every penny in my opinion. I absolutely loved it and would highly recommend a visit.