Van Gogh, Provence, and us .

Van Gogh , la Provence, et nous .

English version below the pictures or French text.

Récemment une amie afficha sur sa page Facebook une peinture de Van Gogh . Je lui répondis que nous avions voyagé dans la région de France qu’il aimait beaucoup: la Provence. C’était en 2006

Last month a friend ( SaxophoneWife ) posted on her facebook a painting by Van Gogh . I told her we had travelled in the area of France he loved much: Provence ( Southern France). It was in 2006.

Nous avons séjourné en Provence durant une semaine en Juin exactement entre les deux villes où a vécu le fameux peintre Vincent Van Gogh en 1888 et 1889 : Arles et St Rémy de Provence ( 15 km environ ) . Le premier jour de notre arrivée nous sommes allés au Centre d ‘ Art Présence Van Gogh à St Rémy et là tout était si bien expliqué avec documents et une superbe video que notre séjour allait devenir un séjour Van Gogh . Il a peint à Arles et dans la campagne de St Rémy . Tout ce que nous pouvions voir et admirer , il l ‘ avait peint . Nous avons vécu dans son souvenir . Ci dessous quelques exemples de paysages qui nous ont fait vivre avec lui .

We have stayed in Provence during a week in June exactly between the two towns where the famous painter Vincent Van Gogh lived in 1888 and 1889: Arles and Saint-Remy de Provence (about 15 km) . The fist day of our stay we went to the Center Art Presence Van Gogh in St Remy and , there , all was so well explained with documents and a superb video than our stay was going to become a Van Gogh stay . He painted in Arles and in the country side around St Remy . All of things we could see and admire , he had painted them . We lived in his memory . Below some examples of landscapes that make us live with him .

Les Alyscans in Arles ( roman necroplis)

Quand Van Gogh arriva à Arles en 1888 il fut frappé d ‘ émerveillement par l ‘ intense lumière et sa pureté comme le montre la photo ci – dessus. C ‘ était une découverte pour lui qui venait du Nord , de la Hollande où il est né puis de Paris , régions au ciel nébuleux . Il se mit à peindre avec ardeur et son souci était d ‘ exprimer cette lumière et les vives couleurs qu ‘ elle engendrait ..Sa peinture se transforma.

When Van Gogh arrived in Arles in 1888 he was striken with amazement by the intense light and its purity as the picture above shows . It was a discovery for him who came from Hollande where he was born and Paris , areas with a misty sky . I started to paint with frenzy and what he wanted was to express this light and the brillant colors that it generated . His painting was transformed .

Van Gogh a peint plusieurs tableaux de cafés en Arles et aussi de la maison où il habitait : la Maison Jaune . Couleur vive !

Cafe Van Gogh in Arles photo M. Fauquet 2006

Van Gogh made some paintings of cafes in Arles and also of the ” Yellow House ” where he lived . Bright color !

Les oliviers .Nous avons pris cette photo à l ‘ endroit – même où Van Gogh posa son chevalet . Il était fasciné par les tronc tordus des oliviers qui reflétaient son esprit torturé . Il était malade et se trouvait à sa demande à l ‘ hôpital psychiatrique de St rémy de Provence . Il pouvait circuler librement dans la campagne dominée par la chaîne des Alpilles . Ce tableau est célèbre .

photo Olive trees and the Alpilles in background. Oliviers avec les Alpilles en arrière plan Photo .MFauquet June 2006

The olive trees : we took this picture at the exact place where Van Gogh put his easel . He was fascinated by the twisted trunks of the olive trees which reflected his tortured mind . He was sick and asked to enter voluntarily the psychiatric hospital of St Remy de Provence . He might go freely to the countryside near the Alpilles Range . This painting looking like this picture is famous .

Petits champs de blé et de lavande . C ‘ est ce que voyait Vincent depuis sa chambre d ‘ hôpital . On sait combien les couleurs jaunes et les vagues du champs de blé ont inspiré beaucoup de ses peintures . De même pour le bleu de la lavande .

Blé et Lavande . Small wheat and lavender fields Photo M. Fauquet June 2006

A small wheat field and lavender field . It was what Vincent saw from his room at the hospital . You know how much the yellow color and the waves of the wheat fields inspired many of his paintings . The same for the blue of the lavender .

Voici ces fameux champs de tournesols et ces cyprès qui inspièrent tant Van Gogh :

Sunflowers and Cypress trees . Photo Fauquet June 2006

Here are those famous sunflowers fields and those Cypress trees that inspired so much Van Gogh .

Comme je disais au début nous avons vécu dans une ambiance Van Gogh . On disait Van Gogh mais on pensait Vincent . Et peut – être était – il assis comme Janine à cette table en 1888 contemplant les arênes d’Arles brillamment éclairées par un soleil brûlant ?

Janine en terrasse aux arênes. Janine having a drink face the roman arena of Arles

As I said at the beginning we lived in a Van Gogh ambiance . We said ” Van Gogh ” but we thought ” Vincent ” . And perhaps was he sat like Janine at this same table in 1888 looking at the arenas of Arles brightly lighted by a burning sun .


About fauquetmichel

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109 Responses to Van Gogh, Provence, and us .

  1. loristrawn says:

    I can see Van Gogh’s paintings through your photos! Amazing!

  2. LGail says:

    Thank you for showing me What Van Gogh saw and painted. You have given me an art history lesson.

  3. murisopsis says:

    Wonderful! The 3-D exhibit of his paintings is billed as an immersive experience. Several of our friends have gone and say that it is mesmerizing!! I think I’d rather visit the countryside and see first hand the fields that inspired the paintings instead of computer generated images…

  4. A beautiful nearly ethereal experience, I would love to walk those streets , sit at the café one day. Thank you for the virtual journey and lovely photos. ❤️

  5. puffpop says:

    How fortunate you are to have visited a place that is so inspiring. Now the world knows of this lovely place because of the talent of a great artist. You live in a place of culture and beauty and…history.

  6. Lavinia Ross says:

    What beautiful photos and memories, Michel! Rick and I were in Provence in 2000, when travel was much easier. We have so many good memories of it, too!

    A long time ago, Don McLean wrote a song called “Vincent”, it was about Vincent Van Gogh .
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vincent_(Don_McLean_song)

    Much love to you, Janine and the family, ❤️
    Lavinia

  7. OH, this is so marvelous, Michel! Your photos and your memories! Each photo is spectacular! But the last 2 photos really are so beautiful! 🙂 Thank you for sharing all of this with us! 🙂
    As you know from past posts on my blog, van Gogh is one of my favorite artists! I’ve read books about him, watched movies about him, I’ve written poems about him, ETC!
    I have a huge poster with 3 of his paintings on it on the wall behind by desk. I’m looking at it right now, as I type this comment! 🙂
    ((((HUGS)))) ❤
    "For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream." – Vincent van Gogh
    “There is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.” – Vincent van Gogh

  8. calmkate says:

    What a beautiful tour around places I will never visit, thank you so much for taking me there Michel! I saw his art exhibition in Holland but to see the actual places that ignited his works … how magic. So glad you kept these lovely photos and shared your fond memories 🙂

    I imagine he did sit in that cafe looking just as Janine does …

  9. blb1 says:

    A wonderful post Michel. It made me want to view more of his work.

  10. So beautiful and I learned some things as well. Great post. ❤

  11. mrswrangler says:

    Interesting connections.

  12. What a beautiful place!!!!!!!!

  13. I felt transported to a different place and time, imagining the world through his eyes. Thank you for taking us back in time on this journey with you. Van Gogh’s personal story evokes sympathy and compassion from me. I’m so glad he had paint to express himself.

    Thank you so much for sharing this. God bless you, dear friend!

    Love,
    Caroline ❤️

  14. Caro says:

    Beau reportage ,tu nous as fait voyager …retrouver le soleil qui nous manque tant et les couleurs
    Simon petit, aimait les peintures de Van Gogh …il a étudié ça à l’école
    Bonne soirée à vous deux je vous embrasse bien fort carole

  15. Susan Joos says:

    Lovely! No further words needed from me; you have said it beautifully!

  16. nannyfountain says:

    wonderful! The photo of you and Janine is priceless ❤

  17. Doug Thomas says:

    Fascinating! I regret not visiting Provence, though I did visit the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.

  18. Louisa - Midlife Wellness Coach says:

    Thank you for taking us on a trip following the footsteps of Vincent. I love Van Gogh’s paintings and actually visited Arles to see where he lived toward the end of his life. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to visit St Remy. I’m so glad to see the photos you took as they remind me of Van Gogh’s paintings, which I love. Merci pour le voyage suivi les pas de Vincent.❤

  19. maidyk says:

    bonjour Michel,
    en admirant ta photo d’oliviers, j’ai pensé aussi au musée Renoir entouré d’un jardin avec de magnifiques vieux oliviers que j’adore , le tout situé au-dessus de Cagnes sur mer.
    bises !

    • Merci Maidy . La Provence et la côte méditerranéenne sont une niche d’artistes . Il serait intéressant d’énumérer les artstes qui y ont trouvé refuge et inspiration.
      Amitiés ❤
      Michel

  20. Gayle says:

    Amazing to walk in his footsteps…Michel you were so lucky! I think some of his artistic ability flew into you!
    God bless you and Janine. ❤

  21. suester7 says:

    It’s really cool you got to walk where Van Gogh walked, sit where he sat, and experience the places he was at. He was a brilliant artist who tragically suffered from a tortured mind.

  22. neilc693 says:

    What a marvelous post! Someday I will just have to see two places, Provence and Barcelona. To retrace Van Gogh’s journey must have been captivating.

  23. Sartenada says:

    Hello Michel.

    Very interesting post. We have in in the museum of Vincent van Gogh in Amsterdam. I recommend you to visit there. The town of Arles, was the town in which my both children made their class trip and visited during two weeks there. This was when they were in French school in Helsinki.

    Thank you very much for this great post. Happy upcoming weekend. Amitiés, Matti

  24. vickyvix2 says:

    Tres charmant, utterly gorgeous. My family and I visited Provence around the year 2000. The landscape has many features similar to Lebanon, with the olive trees, but Lebanon does not have quite so many sunflowers! There is something wonderfully eternal about Van Gogh’s work. Thank you for sharing. ❤

  25. Marion says:

    Michel, thanks for taking us on a virtual tour of where Vincent Van Gogh painted his beautiful artworks! I have always admire the vibrancy of colour used in his works. 🙂

  26. bernard25 says:

    Bonjour MICHEL ET A TOUTE TA FAMILLE

    La douceur de vivre c’est :
    C’est un café avec une amie, un baiser volé, un message inattendu
    C’est le regard amical d’un passant
    C’est répondre au téléphone et entendre avec surprise la voix de ceux que nous aimons
    C’est une bouffée d’air frais après une journée enfermée dans une pièce
    C’est un sourire
    C’est une promenade au soleil après des semaines de pluie
    C’est un nouveau parfum
    C’est le sourire d’un enfant
    C’est une confidence entre sœurs et frères
    C’est d’entendre la voix de ses enfants
    C’est notre chanson préférée à la radio
    C’est une émotion soudaine
    C’est la pleine lune
    C’est un câlin affectueux.
    Mon Amie Ami passe une agréable semaine avec tes proches et ceux t’entourent
    Bisous D’amitié BERNARD

  27. marica0701 says:

    I love the architecture and landscaping!
    I hope you’re well, Michel. I have been busy with my new job so I haven’t been on WordPress a lot these last few weeks.
    Take care!

  28. Just stopping by with some (((HUGS))) for you and Janine today! 🙂 ❤

  29. Resa says:

    Thank you for this wonderful post, Michel!
    The photos are great, and the history lesson valuable! xo

  30. Anne says:

    De toute BEAUTE !
    Ces couleurs lumineuses devenues célèbres dans le monde entier.

    En Chine, Vincent est très copié et apprécié … Pourquoi pas, une copie déclarée en tant que telle est toujours mieux qu’un simple poster.
    Nous en avons ramenées 3 de notre temps à Hong Kong. Magnifiques … et acquises pour une bouchée de pain. Il y en avait des piles …. C’était à Shenzhen dans un quartier réservé aux peintres https://www.asiaundiscovered.com/dafen-oil-painting-village/

    Amitiés colorées

  31. Beautiful, Nichel

    Beautiful, Michel.

  32. Thank you for sharing your visit and your reflections on the life and work of Vincent Van Gogh. Beautiful post! have a great day!
    Love ❤
    Cheryl

  33. The “Van Gogh ambience” is felt in your post and your photos, Michel.

  34. What a lovely adventure you took us on, Michel 🙂
    I, too, would love to see the spots you mentioned. Perhaps one day!!

  35. Doug Thomas says:

    I wish I had visited Provence when I was over there…

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