Vincent Van Gogh : The Yellow House


Tired of being out of workshop, Vincent rented the right wing of a small building on the Lamartine Square for 15f per month.
That house, right in the sun, opposite a small public garden, appealed a good deal to him and would be the source of numerous drawings, a painting and a watercolour.
It was a small house, with two rooms upstairs and a workshop on the ground floor, which he would do up little by little. He was allowed to paint “the outside in fresh butter yellow, the inside in white, the windows and doors in green” by the owner.
He wrote to his sister Wil: “I live in a small yellow house, with green shutters and doors, a whitewashed inside, and brightly coloured Japanese drawings on the walls ; the floor is made of red tiles”.
The house is right in the sun, under a deep blue sky and the shadow, at midday, is much shorter than at home”.
That “right in the sun” house would be the frame of his hopes, his dreams, of his almost-happiness, then of his most serious breakdown.
Too big for him alone, and following a dear idea to him – that of creating a gathering of artists in the South- Vincent suggested to Theo that he called for Gauguin to come and work with him.
Theo would send 250f per month for both of them, and in return,Gauguin would have to give him a canvas per month.
In order to welcome Gauguin, Vincent finished doing up the yellow house. He bought two beds, a table, chairs and settled there for good on September 18th, about a month before Gauguin’s much expected arrival.
After hesitating several months, Gauguin arrived at last. But very soon, their relationship deteriorated and became hard to keep up, and after several quarrels, Gauguin decided to go, to Vincent’s utter despair, who cut his ear in a fit of anger.
He was taken to hospital a few days then would come back to live in the yellow house, until a petition fom the neighbourhood, declaring him dangerous, had him committed.
After renting two small rooms to Doctor Rey to store his things, Vincent went directly from the Hotel-Dieu to the Mausole asylum in Saint Rémy