|Thatched Cottages at Cordeville|
Oil on canvas
72.0 x 91.0 cm.
Auvers-sur-Oise: June, 1890
F 792, JH 1987
Paris: Musee d'Orsay
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After more than a year in voluntary confinement at the Saint-Paul-de-Mausole asylum in Saint-Rémy, France, Vincent van Gogh moved to the village of Auvers-sur-Oise on 20 May 1890. With Auvers' proximity to Paris, Van Gogh would be much closer to his brother Theo as well as Theo's wife, Johanna, and their newborn son. Van Gogh also felt reassured (at least initially) that he would be under the capable care of the homeopathic physician Dr. Paul Gachet.
Upon his arrival in Auvers, Van Gogh was immediately delighted with its environs. On the day of his arrival he wrote to Theo and Johanna in Paris with great enthusiasm:
Auvers is really beautiful – among other things many old thatched roofs, which are becoming rare.
Van Gogh also wrote to his sister Willemien about his pleasure with the Auvers countryside:
And as for myself, for the moment I still fear the noise and the bustle of Paris and I left immediately for the country – to an old village.
Van Gogh would delight in his exploration of Auvers-sur-Oise and in June he would write to Theo and Jo "I’ve done two studies of houses in the greenery" (Letter 640). It's uncertain if Van Gogh was referring specifically to Thatched Cottages at Cordeville (the other candidates being Houses in Auvers: both F 759 and F 805). Whatever the case, Van Gogh's enthusiasm for the subject is clear and he undertook the painting of this cottage in Cordeville, a small hamlet near Auvers, with great passion.
In a number of earlier works Van Gogh would brilliantly use contrasting colours to bring vibrant life to his canvases. In Thatched Cottages at Cordeville, however, one sees a harmonious symphony of blues and greens. The lush fields flow like a gently rolling ocean and the bushes adjacent to the cottage move with flame-like fluidity. Even the cottage itself seamlessly blends into the landscape--an integral and organic wholeness that makes this painting so remarkable.
Thatched Cottages at Cordeville figures prominently in Frank Herbert's Dune science fiction series. The painting is one of the only objects to survive from Earth. In Hunters of Dune (written by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson) the work is mentioned once again. The following passage is set more than 26,000 years in the future:
The Van Gogh painting hung on a metal wall of Sheeana's cabin. She had stolen the masterpiece from the Mother Superior's quarters before escaping from Chapterhouse. Of all the crimes she had committed during her flight, taking the Van Gogh was her only selfish and unjustified act. For years, she had drawn comfort from this great work of art and everything it represented.
|Paul Ferd. Gachet||Auvers-sur-Oise||France||1890|
|Musée National du Louvre||Paris||France||1954|
|Year||City||Country||Venue||Exhibition Name||Start Date||End Date||No.|
|1905||Paris||France||Grandes Serres de l'Alma||Exposition de la Société des Artistes Indépendants, 21e exposition: Exposition rétrospective Vincent van Gogh||24 March 1905||30 April 1905||21|
|1905||Amsterdam||Netherlands||Stedelijk Museum||Tentoonstelling Vincent van Gogh||15 July 1905||1 August 1905||229b|
|1947-48||London||United Kingdom||Tate Gallery||Vincent van Gogh 1853-1890||10 December 1947||14 January 1948||92|
|1948||Birmingham||United Kingdom||City Art Gallery||Vincent van Gogh 1853-1890||24 January 1948||14 February 1948||92|
|1948||Glasgow||Scotland||Art Gallery||Vincent van Gogh 1853-1890||21 February 1948||14 March 1948||92|
|1954-55||Paris||France||L'Orangerie des Tuileries||Van Gogh et les peintres d'Auvers-sur-Oise||26 November 1954||28 February 1954||47|
|1990||Amsterdam||Netherlands||Van Gogh Museum||Vincent van Gogh. Schilderijen||30 March 1990||29 July 1990||118|
|1999||Amsterdam (2)||Netherlands||Van Gogh Museum||From Cézanne to Van Gogh: The Collection of Dr. Gachet||24 September 1999||5 December 1999||19|
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