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Norton Museum of Art to Exhibit Painting by Van Gogh on Loan from National Gallery
Vincent Van Gogh, Self-Portrait, 1889. Oil on canvas, 22 ½ by 17 ¼ inches. National Gallery of Art, Washington, Collection of Mr. and Mrs. John Hay Whitney, 1998.74.5
WEST PALM BEACH, FL.- For the next several months the Norton Museum’s celebrated painting by Paul Gauguin, Christ in the Garden of Olives, 1889 (illustrated at right), will be featured in the exhibition Gauguin: Maker of Myth at the Tate Modern, London, and the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. In this work Gauguin portrayed himself in a tragic, iconic mode as Jesus Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane on the night of his betrayal by Judas Iscariot. In a poignant reference to his attempted artistic liaison with Vincent van Gogh, which had recently ended in a debacle, Gauguin has given himself bright orange-red hair—like that of his erstwhile colleague and friend. During much of our painting’s absence from West Palm Beach the Museum will display, instead, an almost exactly contemporaneous self-portrait by Van Gogh, likewise painted in the immediate aftermath of the contentious and aborted sojourn with Gauguin, at Arles, which lasted from October through December 1888.

Early in his career, the Dutchman Van Gogh idolized and emulated the work of French artist Jean-François Millet (1814–75), renowned painter of peasants whose existence he ennobled in works such as The Angelus, 1857–59. During Van Gogh’s formative years this picture was in multiple American collections where, thanks to repeated public exhibition, it became perhaps the most famous modern painting in the world. Van Gogh arrived in Paris in March 1886; there he encountered works by contemporary artists such as Cézanne, Renoir, Seurat, and Signac which radically affected his own outlook and style. He rapidly developed the highly individual technique with which the world is now familiar, one characterized by high-key, saturated pigments thickly applied with energetic brushstrokes. Color is not always objectively realistic but is, instead, imbued with symbolic and expressive values. For these reasons his influence on the other stylistic trends of the late 19th and early 20th centuries—especially Fauvism—is incalculable.

The present Self-Portrait is one of the very last of no fewer than 36 which Van Gogh executed between his arrival in Paris and his suicide at the asylum in Saint-Rémy in July 1890. It seems to have been executed in a single sitting without later retouching. Van Gogh depicted himself at work, dressed in an artist’s smock with a palette and brushes in hand; he looks over his left shoulder (as if at the viewer) with an aspect of intense seriousness and self-scrutiny. This manner of self-presentation was anything but casual or accidental: it was, instead, a strategically calculated choice whereby Van Gogh intended to evoke and thereby suggest some affinity to the self-portraits of Rembrandt van Rijn, the greatest of all Dutch artists. But the haunting—indeed, the haunted—quality of Van Gogh’s picture is unforgettable. The dark blue-violet of the smock and ground, the vivid orange of his hair and beard, create a startling contrast to the yellow and green tones of his face and heighten the gauntness of his features and sallow complexion. The dynamic, even frenzied brushwork lends an uncommon immediacy and expressiveness to the Washington Self-Portrait: it is not just a record of the artist’s appearance, but a revelation of his precarious psychological state.





Last Week News

August 28, 2010

"Nude Visions: 150 Years of Nude Photography" Opens at the Museum of Visual Arts, Leipzig

Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg Presents Exhibition of American Impressionist Paintings

The Kimbell Art Museum Presents "Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea"

Exhibition Brings Together Beautiful, Playful, Whimsical, and Glowing Sculptural Artworks

Tony Cragg in 4D: From Flux to Stability at the International Gallery of Modern Art in Venice

Tangible Signs of Life to Arrive at 9/11 Memorial in New York

Group Wants to Open Historic Albert Kahn Designed Ford Plant for Tours

Anne Morgan's War: Rebuilding Devastated France, 1917-1924 Opens Next Week

Even Under Renovation and Expansion, the Stedelijk Museum Opens a Major Exhibition

Architectural Gems Languish on California Home Market

Georgia Museum of Art Acquires Two Paintings from West Foundation Collection

Christie's to Offer Works from the Alastair Bradley Martin Estate

Tut-Tut: Security Problems Seen in Most of Egypt's Museums

National Museum of American History Receives Record-Breaking Tennis Racquet

LAXART Names Malik Gaines as New Curator

Pritzker's 1st is Silent Film with Live Music

Sotheby's Hong Kong to Hold Important Watches Autumn Sale 2010

Christie's Presents the Fall Sale of Japanese and Korean Art

Discover America's Roots In First-Ever Charles Deas Retrospective

Crocker Art Museum Receives Gift of Ceramics by Rob Barnard

Bonhams Offer Masterpiece from One of the Greatest Arab Artists in Dubai Sale

Winnipeg Art Gallery Acquires Important Painting by John Everett Millais

The New School Names David E. Van Zandt New President

Dramatic Painting Capturing World War Two Horrors Acquired for Ben Uri

Documentary on Purported Adams' Negatives Canceled

John Gossage: The Pond Opens at the Smithsonian American Art Museum

Archives of American Art Marks Kraushaar Galleries' 125th Anniversary

Torpedo Found at Philadelphia Construction Site

August 27, 2010

Frank Gehry Presents Luma: Parc des Ateliers Project at Venice Architecture Biennale

Georgia Museum of Art Acquires Two Paintings from West Foundation Collection

Christie's to Offer Works from the Alastair Bradley Martin Estate

Tut-Tut: Security Problems Seen in Most of Egypt's Museums

The New School Names David E. Van Zandt New President

Winnipeg Art Gallery Acquires Important Painting by John Everett Millais

Bonhams Offer Masterpiece from One of the Greatest Arab Artists in Dubai Sale

John Gossage: The Pond Opens at the Smithsonian American Art Museum

Documentary on Purported Adams' Negatives Canceled

Dramatic Painting Capturing World War Two Horrors Acquired for Ben Uri

David Gordon Franklin Named Director of Cleveland Museum of Art

Recently Acquired Works of Art on View at the Menil Collection

Chinese Dinosaur Fossils Make North America Debut in Cincinnati

A Series of New Korean Films to Be Presented at MoMA

War Planes to Be the Star in WWII Museum Expansion

Christie's to Offer One of the Most Important Collections of Archaic Bronzes

Mexico's Anthropology Specialists Identify Name of Maya Ruler

Leeds Art Gallery Displays Major Elisabeth Frink Sculpture

Lewis & Clark Among Top Lots at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers' Auction

National Museum Wales Acquires Important Venetian Painting

Nick Cave's World-Famous Soundsuits Featured in the Pages of Vogue

Amon Carter Museum of American Art Announces New Registrar

Will Tough Times Trigger Wealthy Banks and Companies to Sell their Art?

Sotheby's to Hold a Sale of the Contents of One of England's Most Romantic Country Houses

National Gallery of Australia Announces $7 Million Philanthropic Gift from Pauline Gandel and John Gandel AO

Fire Razes Historic Warrior King Site in Zimbabwe

Auschwitz Memorial Acquires Nazi Medical Devices

August 26, 2010

Egypt's Antiquities Department Announces Discovery of 3,500-Year-Old Oasis Trading Post

National Museum Wales Acquires Important Venetian Painting

Lewis & Clark Among Top Lots at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers' Auction

Leeds Art Gallery Displays Major Elisabeth Frink Sculpture

Mexico's Anthropology Specialists Identify Name of Maya Ruler

Will Tough Times Trigger Wealthy Banks and Companies to Sell their Art?

Sotheby's to Hold a Sale of the Contents of One of England's Most Romantic Country Houses

Nick Cave's World-Famous Soundsuits Featured in the Pages of Vogue

Amon Carter Museum of American Art Announces New Registrar

Christie's to Offer One of the Most Important Collections of Archaic Bronzes

Christie's to Sell Property from Highly Respected Interior Decorator Robert Kime

Egyptian Tycoon, Naguib Sawiris, Offers Reward for Van Gogh Theft

Hebrew Manuscripts on View during High Holy Days at Metropolitan Museum

IMA to Present Video Exhibition Examining the Relationship Between Camera Frame and Unbounded Space

Debbie Reynolds' Collection to Highlight September Auction of Furniture and Decorative Arts

Mosque Developer Claims a Classic NYC Background

Jim Henson's Original Kermit the Frog Comes Home to Washington

£35,000 Model Steam Engine Labelled "Mechanical Marvel of the Day" in 1898 to Sell at Bonhams

Relics from Captain Scott's Fatal Last Epedition to Be Offered at Christie's

Larry Gagosian to Present Masterpieces from His Private Collection

Bacardi Celebrates Ties to Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

National Archives to House Infamous Nazi World War II Papers

Norman Foster Designs First Office Headquarters in Argentina

Marlborough in London Presents the Work of Caroline Walker

Christie's Presents Highest Value South Asian Art Sale Ever Offered

Bavarian State Library: First Worldwide to Offer Precious Digitalized Key Books

Jeff Koons' Infamous "Made in Heaven" Series to Go Back On View at Luxembourg & Dayan

Colorado's Once-Missing Moon Rock to Be Unveiled

August 25, 2010

Mexican Archaeologists Extract 10,000 Year-Old Skeleton from Flooded Cave in Quintana Roo

Christie's Presents Highest Value South Asian Art Sale Ever Offered

Bavarian State Library: First Worldwide to Offer Precious Digitalized Key Books

Jeff Koons' Infamous "Made in Heaven" Series to Go Back On View at Luxembourg & Dayan

Relics from Captain Scott's Fatal Last Epedition to Be Offered at Christie's

Larry Gagosian to Present Masterpieces from His Private Collection

Bacardi Celebrates Ties to Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

National Archives to House Infamous Nazi World War II Papers

Norman Foster Designs First Office Headquarters in Argentina

Marlborough in London Presents the Work of Caroline Walker

Newseum in Washington Retells Katrina Story 5 Years Later

Sculptures and Paintings Lead Christie's Sale of Indian and Southeast Asian Art

Finders Keepers: A Tale of Archeological Plunder and Obsession

Group Representing Ansel Adams Sues Over Garage Sale Negatives

Haus Konstruktiv Celebrates Concrete, Constructivist and Conceptual Art

Egypt Culture Chief, Farouk Hosni, Sleepless Over Van Gogh Theft

Major International Art Project to Bring Dialogue Between the UK and Turkey

Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art at Sotheby's

PBS Launches New "PBS Arts" Site to Expand Arts Content

United Kingdom Show Explores Jimi Hendrix's Links to Handel

United States Funds Restoration of Global Islamic Sites

Leonardo's Last Supper by Peter Greenaway at Park Avenue Armory

Nokuthula Ngwenyama Named 2010 Taft Museum of Art Duncanson Artist-in-Residence

Annual Auction of Modern & Vintage Sporting Guns at Gleneagles Fetches £375,063

Copper Cast of Lady Liberty's Nose Up for Auction

August 24, 2010

Eli Broad Picks Downtown Los Angeles Site for Art Museum to Showcase His Collection

Newseum in Washington Retells Katrina Story 5 Years Later

Exceptional Bronzes, Sculpture and Paintings Lead Christie's Sale of Indian and Southeast Asian Art

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PBS Launches New "PBS Arts" Site to Expand Arts Content

Fine Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art at Sotheby's

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Group Representing Ansel Adams Sues Over Garage Sale Negatives

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Painting by Egon Schiele Stolen by Nazis Back in Austrian Museum

Empire State Building Cries Foul Over Proposed Rival Nearby

Spy Museum Adds Another Former Spy to Staff in Washington DC

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Large Scale Etchings by Richard Serra at Fabian & Claude Walter Galerie

The Whitney to Present Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time

Storm Knocks Down Monumental Tree that Cheered Anne Frank

Acropolis Open for Full Moon as Pay Dispute Solved

Who Shot Rock and Roll Ends Nation-Wide Tour at the Columbia Museum of Art

Trial Date Set in Associated Press-Shepard Fairey Dispute in NYC

Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas to Feature First Romero Britto Store at Sea

San Jose Museum Opens First Museum Survey Devoted to Work of Leo Villareal

Asian Art Dealers New York Announce Exciting Fall Schedule of Exhibitions

Sotheby's London to Hold First-Ever Sale of Chimneypieces

100% Success in Gstaad: Entire Peter F. Baumberger Motor Car Collection Sold by Bonhams

Harn Museum of Art Receives $4.2 Million Collection of Asian Art

Sotheby's Hong Kong To Offer The Bordeaux Collection from SK Networks

August 23, 2010

Pomeranian State Museum to Open Exhibition by Three Masters of German Romanticism

Painting by Egon Schiele Stolen by Nazis Back in Austrian Museum

Billionaire Eli Broad Chooses Los Angeles Site for Art Museum

Egypt Deputy Minister, Mohsen Shalaan, Detained Over Van Gogh Theft

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The Whitney to Present Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time

New Exhibition of African Art at the Dallas Museum of Art

Faulty Alarms Blamed for Van Gogh Theft at Mahmoud Khalil Museum in Egypt

Japanese Art Dealers Association Announces Asia Week Exhibitions

Park Avenue Armory Welcomes Yoshitomo Nara + YNG for Open Studio

Craftsman Seeks to Save Millennium-Old World of Chinese Lead Type

European Masterpieces Opening Soon at the Royal Academy of Arts

Countdown to Auctions America Debut in Auburn

Chinati Foundation Names Dr. Thomas Kellein as Director

Art Fair Tokyo Announces New Organizational Structure

VIP Art Fair: The First Art Fair to Launch in January Exclusively Online

Anne Noble: At the End of the Earth Opens at Stills Gallery in Sydney

Resounding Success at this Year's Art Nocturne Knocke

LA Unveils $578M School, Costliest in the Nation, Fine Art Murals Included

Group Exhibition of 8 Korean Media Artists to Open at Gallery Hyundai

New Orleans to Remember Hurricane Katrina with Richard Misrach Exhibition

New Installation by Trenton Doyle Hancock Takes Over the Seattle Art Museum's Olympic Sculpture Park

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Image of a Christ without a beard, short hair and wearing a toga unearthed in Spain

2.- Giant mosaic unearthed in mysterious tomb in Amphipolis in northern Macedonia

3.- Bonhams sale of 18th century French decorative arts to benefit Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco

4.- Paris flustered by erection of 'sex-toy' sculpture; Paul McCarthy slapped by a passer-by

5.- High art or vile pornography? Marquis de Sade explored in Orsay museum exhibition

6.- 'Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection' opens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

7.- Greek culture minister says Elgin Marbles return a matter of 'global heritage'

8.- Vandals deflate Paris 'sex-toy' sculpture by American artist Paul McCarthy after outrage

9.- Exhibition at National Gallery in London explores Rembrandt's final years of painting

10.- 'Hans Memling: A Flemish Renaissance' opens at the Scuderie del Quirinale in Rome



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