36 Yrs Old

It is never good neither for your body and soul to have defeating comparison. What shall life prepare for you when you’re 36 years of age? Better yet, what have you achieved in your younger clothes?

Vincent van Gogh at 36 years old had hit the pivotal point of mental illness. He sought to ease the graveness of chronic mental attacks visiting doctors and forming healthy relationship with friends and family but none proved to be effective. Instead, he spent his year at a mental asylum in Saint-Remy-de-Provence.

But what he really did at the age 36 is quite astonishing. Well, it was more than the most of human beings at that age.

Here is the landmark which Vincent van Gogh had created, regarded where we stand as the epitome of modern art legacy: “The Starry Night.” But isn’t it a complete ridicule to glorify the painting as such if you’re one of the minorities who knows the story behind its creation?

I don’t like crazy in someone. But I love the madness in anyone, don’t you?

Throw away the analogy, the theology but keep your imagination wild. Van Gogh painted the Night between the bars in mental asylum, imagining the imaginary village on the bottom. There’s no God in this painting. Unless the painter argues otherwise, so unless otherwise, it’s otherwise.


“…Tender is the Night. Right, Fritz?” As I sit across the room he shakes his fine hairs sideways, “Not really tonight, I can’t say. Sky it morbid, full of loneliness, illnesses and pains I can’t say, I can’t write. 


The Starry Night (June, 1889 in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence) #tb#masterpiece
Vincent was 36 years old
Oil on Canvas
74cm x 92cm
Permanent Collection at The Museum of Modern Arts (@themuseumofmodernart), New York
“After the sun’s good night kiss,
it was as if this hamlet, this field, these hills,
everything around, silent and grateful, once more recalled,
the richness and peace they had enjoyed,
before wrapping themselves in the cloak of evening dew to sleep.”
(Excerpt of a poem taken from “The Pauper” by Jan van Beers in the letter from #vangogh to Haanebeek Family in London, 2nd July, 1873)
“A starry sky, for example. See, that’s a thing I’d like to try to do, just as by day I want to try to paint a green meadow spangled with starry dandelions. Yet how can I do it, unless I work it out at home, and from my imagination? Of course, this faults my idea while yours gets praised.” (From #vvg to Emile Bernard, Arles, 9th April 1888)
“When you have looked at [the starry night study] for some time, and that of the ivy as well, it will perhaps give you some idea, better than words could, of the things that Gauguin and Bernard and I sometimes used to talk about, and which we’ve thought about a good deal; it is not a return to the romantic or to religious ideas, no. Nevertheless, by going the way of Delacroix, more than is apparent, by colour and a more spontaneous drawing than delusive precision, one could express the purer nature of a countryside compared with the suburbs and cabarets of Paris.” (From #vvgto #tvg, Saint-Remy, 17th or 18th June, 1889)
“Paul Signac on his visit to Vincent van Gogh in Arles, Spring 1889: [Vincent] led me to his apartments in Lamartine Square, where I saw his marvellous pictures, his [masterpiece]: the Starry Night. Imagine the splendour of those whitewashed walls, on which flowered those colourings in their full freshness.” (Excerpt taken from Gustave Coquiot to Unknown, Paris, 1932)
Have you seen this painting in person?

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