Whilst staying in Venice this Spring, why not consider planning a day-trip to the beautiful city of Vicenza, where you’ll currently find Italy’s largest ever exhibition dedicated to Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), titled “Van Gogh. Between Wheat and Sky”.
Just a short 45-minute train-ride from Venice, this monumental show is staged within the vast Renaissance basilica designed by Andrea Palladio for Vicenza’s Piazza dei Signori.
Bringing together 40 paintings and 85 drawings by the celebrated Dutch artist, the exhibition guides visitors on a chronological itinerary through van Gogh’s career, retracing his remarkable artistic evolution in the years leading up to his tragic death in 1890, aged just 37.
The show begins with five rooms dedicated to Van Gogh’s so-called “Dutch years”, featuring a large series of early works including sombre still lifes and landscapes depicting the suffering and despair of peasant labourers toiling in the fields of Belgium and the Netherlands. By dramatic contrast, the exhibition then continues with a series of galleries dedicated to the artist’s later French period, when – inspired by the warmth and golden hues of the landscape around Arles and Saint-Rémy – his works became enlivened with energetic brushstrokes and dazzling, vivid colours.
Alongside the many artworks on view, the exhibition also presents a number of Van Gogh’s highly personal and passionate letters to his beloved brother Theo, as well as archive photographs and works by other contemporary artists who influenced Van Gogh’s artistic development. Additionally, the show features an intriguing 20-square-metre reconstruction of the Saint-Paul-de-Mausole infirmary where Van Gogh was treated for insanity between 1889 to 1890 – a period when he produced some of his most powerful and poignant works. Finally, the exhibition concludes with a revealing new film – commissioned especially for the current show – that offers a fascinating overview of Van Gogh’s extraordinary life and legacy.
“Van Gogh. Between Wheat and Sky” is on view at Basilica Palladiana, Piazza dei Signori, Vicenza until 8th April 2018.