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Summary

The career path of Vincent Van Gogh (18531890), one of the world's most recognizable artists, was anything but typical. Focusing on the early stages of Van Gogh's artistic development, Becoming Van Goghillustrates the artist's efforts to master draftsmanship, understand the challenges of materials and techniques, incorporate color theory, and fold myriad influences into his artistic vocabulary. Van Gogh was aware of avant-garde trends including Georges Seurat's divisionism, Paul Signac's and Camille Pissarro's pointillism, Emile Bernard's synthetism, and Henri Toulouse-Lautrec's immersion in the bohemian culture of Montmartre. This handsome book features works by Van Gogh alongside works by the artists who influenced him, showing how he incorporated elements of their techniques into a style that became, eventually, uniquely his own. It features essays exploring how Van Gogh imbued his early works with energy as he strove to master drawing with graphite, ink, and washes; how he began to understand color with watercolor paintings; and how he began to test his skill with oils on canvas. The distinguished contributors to this volume offer insight into Van Gogh's temperament, memory, typography, and his relationship with his critics, among other topics. Generously illustrated with 150 color images, the book also includes a chronology charting the artist's stylistic development.

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