Vincent van Gogh exhibition

Before the lockdown was implemented in the UK I visited the Meet Vincent exhibition in London. I’m quite a fan of Vincent van Gogh’s artwork and I think his story is an incredible one and deeply sad. I think that his art is emotive and really beautiful so was keen to go visit and find out more. The exhibition was quite different to what you might expect. There are lots of props and everyone is encouraged to touch and get close to the displays.

Upon arrival you were handed a headset that would activate as you walked around the exhibit, telling you about that period of the artist’s life and what kind of art Vincent would have produced. There was a room that has a video project onto the wall to give you an idea of what the landscape was like as Vincent painted. You could hear the wind rushing through the tall grass and the birds crying in the sky. Another big section was the cafĂ© Vincent frequented regularly, painting other customers from his table.

Haystacks play a large part in Vincent’s artwork and there were hay bales you could sit on and a large cart filled with hay.

I think my favourite section was the reproduction of his famous bedroom. You could walk into it and it really felt like you were walking in to one of his most famous paintings. It bought back memories of when I tried to draw the chair with a pipe resting on it at school.

The next section was about Vincent’s stay at a hospital after he infamously cut off his ear, having struggled with menial illness. He created many more paintings here during his stay.

The final section was about how the world has fallen in love with his paintings after he died. Vincent van Gogh painted over 2000 paintings during his 10 years as an artist.

I would definitely recommend a visit to this exhibition if you’re a fan, mildly curious or just love beautiful paintings. I really enjoyed my visit and it gave me a much better idea of who Vincent van Gogh was and his struggle through life.

Capturing artwork

I recently went to the National Gallery in London and since my last visit you are now allowed to take photographs. I would normally never take photographs of paintings as I always would want to visit and appreciate the work in person, but on this occasion I decided to take a few snaps as a nice reminder. The photos I took were of some of my favourite paintings by great artists that I’m lucky to have on my doorstep in London, namely The Waterlily Pond by Monet and Sunflowers by Van Gogh.

I always like to take a moment and think about how long it must have taken to create such a painting and what kind of person the artist must have been to paint in this way during their life, artworks that really stand the test of time. I love being able to see the textures of the layered paint and the colours, which close up looks quite messy but stand back and you see how great it all comes together and looks quite beautiful.

I hope to visit again at some point and enjoy all the great paintings that are luckily so easy for me to access.