Starry Night

I took an Art History class during my last semester of college. I never really studied art before and I had room in my schedule for it. Starry Night was one of the works that we studied and the backstory to this painting truly touched me.

The painter, Vincent van Gogh, battled with depression throughout his life and never could connect with the people around him. Van Gogh had intense emotional feelings and dared to be an independent thinker. He was a self-taught painter and did not get the recognition he deserved until after he died. His works are very honest, personal, emotional, and bold. About a year before he committed suicide, Van Gogh paintedย Starry Night from the window of the asylum where he had committed himself. The sky is turbulent and full of cosmic energy as the sun is just beginning to rise on the horizon line. The cyprus tree on the left is deliberately painted out of scale and it signifies death. But, death is not portrayed as a bad or scary thing here. The tree is linking Earth and Heaven, showing that there is a journey after death. And the final destination is a star.

I always thought this painting was beautiful, but now it’s my favorite painting of all time. If this is what insanity looks like, then I hope to never be sane. I also believe that death is not the end of a soul’s journey, but just the beginning. Van Gogh’s visual representation of that journey is genius. I now imagine him painting among the stars, free from the pain he had to endure on Earth. Art was his escape from reality. And I’m thankful he was able to share that gorgeous escape with the world.

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8 thoughts on “Starry Night

  1. Reblogged this on marsthemartian's Blog and commented:
    This has always been my favorite painting for as long as I can remember. I don’t even know how I came across it in the first place, but I remember one year (maybe 5th grade?) I had an art birthday party, and so we did Pin The Star on the Starry Night. Now that I have learned the background to the painting, I feel especially connected to the painting and artist, because I have struggled deeply with depression myself. For my past birthday, I even got knee high starry night socks and they are my favorite. I wear them all the time, with my pants rolled up so that everyone can see how awesome they are. ๐Ÿ™‚ This blog has made me even more interested in Vincent Van Gogh and his struggles, so maybe I’ll post again, discussing his life in more detail… You can really appreciate his art much more once you know the background behind it.

      • I really think you’d like the episode.. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I will tell you that the Doctor goes back in time to meet him, and finds out Vincent is being ‘haunted’ by a terrifying alien creature that only he can see (and thats why people thought he was ‘crazy’ and cast him out). Its an interesting take ๐Ÿ˜‰

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