Van Gogh and the Seasons
The National Gallery of Victoria, in partnership with Art Exhibitions Australia, presents Van Gogh and the Seasons for the Melbourne Winter Masterpieces series in 2017. Curated by Sjraar van Heugten (independent art historian and former Head of Collections at the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam), Van Gogh and the Seasons is internationally exclusive to Melbourne.
The seasons had profound meaning for Van Gogh: they represented the circle of life within nature – birth, bloom, maturity and death. For the artist, this ongoing cycle represented the greatness of nature and the existence of a higher force. Van Gogh repeatedly painted scenes that richly evoke the sensory pleasures or deprivations particular to each season – spring-time, with its blossoming orchards and flowering meadows; summer, with fields of ripe wheat shimmering under the hot sun; autumn, with bountiful harvests and solitary figures sowing seeds as dusk approaches; and winter, with peasants digging potatoes out of frozen fields, or sharing a meagre meal by candlelight.