Van Gogh and Japan

Exhibition Overview


Van Gogh, Courtesan
Van Gogh, Courtesan (after Eisen), oil on canvas, 100.7 cm x 60.7 cm.

The exhibition Van Gogh & Japan will shed light on the influence exerted by Japanese art on Vincent van Gogh.

Van Gogh created his own image of Japan by studying and reading about Japanese art, collecting and copying prints, and discussing their aesthetic qualities with other artists. His encounter with Japanese prints helped him to give his work a new direction.

The exhibition will demonstrate, step by step, how Van Gogh bent the Japanese example to his will. In this way he defined himself as a modern artist and positioned himself opposite such artists as Emile Bernard and Paul Gauguin. The size, nature and importance of Van Gogh’s own collection of Japanese prints will be explored in detail, as will the role played by his prints in the renewal of his own idiom.

"I envy the Japanese the extreme clarity that everything in their work has." (letter to Theo van Gogh, september 1888).

(Image: Van Gogh, Courtesan (after Eisen), 1887, oil on canvas, 100.7 cm x 60.7 cm, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

Exhibition Highlights


Vincent van Gogh

The Arlésienne (Marie Ginoux)

Utagawa Hiroshige II

Lake Chūzenji in Shimotsuke Province

Vincent van Gogh

The Bedroom

Vincent van Gogh

Woman Rocking the Cradle (Augustine Roulin)

Vincent van Gogh

Undergrowth with Two Figures

Katsushika Hokusai

Fuji Seen from the Katakura Tea Plantation in the Suruga Province

Vincent van Gogh

Almond Blossom

Katsushika Hokusai

Under the Wave of Kanagawa

Vincent van Gogh

Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear

Utagawa Hiroshige II

Plum Garden at Kamata
Exhibition Highlights

Vincent van Gogh

The Arlésienne (Marie Ginoux), 1888
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Bequest of Sam A. Lewisohn, 1951

Utagawa Hiroshige II

Lake Chūzenji in Shimotsuke Province, 1859-1861
Nationaal Museum voor Wereldculturen, Leiden

Vincent van Gogh

The Bedroom, Arles, October 1888
oil on canvas, 72.4 cm x 91.3 cm
Credits (obliged to state): Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

Vincent van Gogh

Woman Rocking the Cradle (Augustine Roulin), 1889
The Art Institute of Chicago, Helen Birch Bartlett Memorial Collection, 1926

Vincent van Gogh

Undergrowth with Two Figures, 1890
Cincinnati Art Museum, Bequest of Mary E. Johnston, 1967

Katsushika Hokusai

Fuji Seen from the Katakura Tea Plantation in the Suruga Province, 1831-1835
Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, purchased with the support of the F.G. Waller-Fonds

Vincent van Gogh

Almond Blossom, Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, February 1890
oil on canvas, 73.3 cm x 92.4 cm
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

Katsushika Hokusai

Under the Wave of Kanagawa, 1829-1833
Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Vincent van Gogh

Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear, 1889
The Samuel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London

Utagawa Hiroshige II

Plum Garden at Kamata, 1857
Nationaal Museum voor Wereldculturen, Leiden
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