Van Gogh and Artaud; two artists that are connected by the madness, even though, they didn’t live in the same period. For the second time in history, the Parisian art scene unites them together. The first time was in 1947, when Pierre Loeb held an exhibition about Van Gogh in Paris and suggested Artaud to write about the artist. The extracts from Dr. Beer’s, Van Gogh’s Demon provoked him to clarify the society’s opinion about Van Gogh and his psychological behavior. The result was the book entitled Le Suicidé De La Société (The Man Suicided by Society).

Through the exhibition, one can see 40 works of Van Gogh including his paintings and letters, as well as Artaud’s portraits and paintings he produced during his process of writing his book. Our eyes are captivated by the nostalgic Van Gogh’s paintings, like La Nuit Étoilée (A Starry Night), Roses et Anémones (Roses and Anemones) and the iconic work of Artaud, like the portrait of Man Ray.

As the extension of this exhibition, Musée d’Orsay arranges a cinematographic experience called Van Gogh à l’Écran, which started on 16th and goes until the 25th of May 2014. This is the first time Paris welcomes the movie screening of Artaud’s films about Van Gogh. 15 films, short and feature are projected and present Van Gogh’s life through his paintings. One of the movies that we watched, Van Gogh (1947) directed by Alain Resnais brings us to a nostalgic moment during Vincent Van Gogh’s journey to achieve his passion in art. He was rejected by the society of his homeland, Nuenen, because he was trying to be a preacher but then became an artist. Through this movie, we can see that he was moving to Paris and Arles until he got back to the place where he was born and ends his life in Auvers-Sur-Oise, France. This 20-minute movie delivers his misery, agony, and depression, a state that he suffered from for a long time. The monologue speaker, Claude Dauphin and the black and white image direction of Alain Resnais affirms those feelings.

We are curious to see in other movies (that are still being projected until the 25th of May)  how Artaud reveals the secrets as well as his empathy towards Van Gogh who was “suicided by the society”.


Details and Informations:

This exhibition started from 11 March – 6 July 2014


Musée d’Orsay

1 Rue de la Légion d’Honneur, 75007, Paris


8.5 Euros for Students

11 Euros Full Price

Free for European Citizens

Movie Screening Reservation:—VAN-GOGH—ARTAUD-FEART.htm


Nadia Abdel-Malek & Christine Evans

Source of Pictures: Musée d’Orsay

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