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The Beauty in Nature

Art museums are abundant in New England.  Hence, when residents of the region want to feed their cultural appetite, they need not travel too far.

 

One remarkable exhibit to check out this summer is “Van Gogh and Nature” currently being featured at the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts.  The display runs through September 13 and includes loans from several notable museums.  Van Gogh’s esteem for nature, even in its most humble of forms (like a simple gathering of weeds) becomes evident in this incredible presentation.  In fact, van Gogh was passionately drawn to the outdoors since childhood.  The artist’s intellectual curiosity becomes obvious to visitors as they view the landscape through his imaginatively rich eyes.  How could museum-goers not appreciate this man’s seeking spirit, fail to fall in love with his inspired, visionary depictions?

 

And a bit about the artist’s life?

Vincent van Gogh was born in the Netherlands in 1853.  His father was a pastor, and even van Gogh believed he might follow in his dad’s religious footsteps.  He did try various careers in early adulthood.  Yet, in 1880, he moved to Brussels to dedicate himself to the Study of Art.  In 1886, he moved to Paris to join his brother, Theo (Theo was also caught up in the art world).  It was in Paris that van Gogh met innovative geniuses like Gauguin, Pissarro, and Monet.  In 1888, he moved to Provence and soon came to cherish the area’s unspoiled beauty.  Regrettably, the post-impressionist painter suffered with mental troubles and spent slightly over a year at a hospital in Saint-Remy.  In 1890, Vincent Van Gogh passed away from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  Even though this exceptional Dutch artist did not achieve widespread acclaim in his lifetime, future generations have undoubtedly commemorated his amazing works.

 

A bit about Clark Art Institute?

This Western Massachusetts jewel, known as the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute and sometimes called “The Clark” for short, was founded by art aficionado Robert Sterling Clark and his wife, Francine.  Impressively, it serves as both a museum and research institute.  Robert Sterling Clark received a considerable inheritance from his grandfather, a principal in Singer Sewing Machine.  He amassed a sizable art collection with a portion of the bequest.  After a time, Clark and his wife felt compelled to find a place to house the many paintings.  Because of this, The Clark Art Institute was born.  The museum opened on May 17, 1955.  Since its launch, it has become a beloved destination for art experts and dabblers alike.

 

But you’d like additional info concerning the van Gogh exhibit?  Then visit http://www.clarkart.edu/mini-sites/Van-Gogh-and-Nature/exhibition.  By the way, if you do go, be sure to check out Whistler’s Mother by American-born artist James Abbott McNeill Whistler (also on loan to The Clark).  Actually, the legendary piece will be available for viewing until September 27.

 

A final thought?  Safe travels!

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