In a Brilliant Light: Van Gogh in Arles (Institutional Use)


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This program examines the work of Dutch-born artist Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) during the most productive period of his brief artistic life–the fifteen months between February 1888 and May 1889 that he spent in the city of Arles, in the southeastern region of France known as Provence. During his 444 days in Arles, Van Gogh produced some 200 paintings and 100 drawings, inspired by the light and colors of the region. With the guidance of Ronald Pickvance, guest curator of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s “Van Gogh in Arles” exhibition, the film explores, in depth, several of Van Gogh’s most famous works, including the portraits of the Roulin family, The Night Cafe, and Van Gogh’s Bedroom. The film also examines several other major works of the Arles period, including The Harvest, Boats on the Beach, The Sunflowers, and introduces paintings from private collections, rarely reproduced. Filmed on location in the Netherlands and Provence, In a Brilliant Light: Van Gogh in Arles focuses on Van Gogh’s art and not Van Gogh, the artist, dispelling many myths, while also breaking ground in contemporary scholarship.

“… the film is wonderful. It picks up the sights and sounds of Arles and its surrounding landscape as they are today.” – The New York Times, Michael Brenson, Oct. 18, 1984

“… a heavenly film that shouldn’t be missed by anyone with the slightest interest in painting and painters…. ” – TV Guide, 1984

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