Saturday, July 18, 2009
The Elusive Vincent
The Clever Pup -- who commented on my last blogpost, thus inspiring me to go immediately to her blog -- has a good post about this alleged photograph of Vincent van Gogh. I ran across the claim myself a while ago, and for the record, I don't think it's him (neither does The Clever Pup). The person in the photograph is too old, for starters (Vincent was only 33 in 1886, the date claimed for the photograph); two, Vincent didn't like photographs in general, he didn't like his own appearance, and I can't see him posing for a professional photograph; and three, as The Clever Pup points out, Saint Hyacinthe, the home of the photographer, is in Canada. Vincent never went to Canada. For most of 1886, from March onward, he was in Paris living with Theo.
The only confirmed photograph of Vincent as an adult -- there are two of him as a teenager -- shows him from the back, sitting on the banks of the Seine at Asnières with Émile Bernard.