Serenity Through Despair Essay

1477 words - 6 pages

Look at the color red, a color known for its beauty and while it may not be in everybody’s catalogue of beauty, it cannot be denied of its intensity. If one is showed a stunning painting of a red rose, one of the descriptions that could apply to that paining is beauty: seeing such an elegant spectacle of nature being emulated on paper can be quite stimulating. Another description that could be associated with a red rose is passion, as such a color may leave one energized and spontaneous; however how would one respond if they were told that the painting of the rose was painted with blood. Now a painting that once may have suggested the aspects of beauty ...view middle of the document...

Vincent William Van Gogh was a Dutch post-impressionist painter, known for his use of bold color and the portrayal of beauty in a rougher manner. Gogh was able to pursue his passion in painting with the support of his brother Theodorus Van Gogh; however due to continuous struggle with anxiety and mental illness Van Gogh committed suicide. Now the painting Wheatfield with Crows is considered as his last painting before his death; consequently bringing much speculation to what Gogh wished to portray through the painting. Thus when looking at such a spectacle through a reproduced copy like a poster, one cannot truly fully appreciate all the painting has to offer when its embedded with so much history and emotion. Taking a second look at the painting, there is a complete different perception of this work of art, when one looks at the painting one may feel a sense that they are following “the painter’s immediate gestures” (Berger, 158). One of the most noticeable properties of the work is the use of the crows with the most obvious symbolism of crows being death, yet there is a stronger meaning behind the crows which is destiny. The use of the crows in the painting do not necessary symbolize death but a foretelling of what is to come; just the implementation of the crow is ominous enough, yet there may be more meaning in the act the crow are performing. The crows are flying away from the viewer, now one of the proposed symbolism around this is astonishing as Patti Wigington says in her article “The Magic of Crows and Ravens” “low-flying group of Crows means that illness is coming– but if a crow flies over a house and calls three times, that means an impending death in the family” this alludes to Gogh mental illness and death. However the crows are used as a form of messengers not creatures to be disdained, yet if the crows are the messengers what embodies this message? When looking at the painting with great silence the loneliness on feels is virtually unavoidable, Gogh was fantastic at expressing this loneliness. In my younger years I would usually walk to school, where I would have to go through greenfield lands; now I even though I was a child, I would find more comfort when seeing a stranger walking on the field in the same or different path than being the only person on the path/field. Gogh beautifully adds three paths on the Wheatfield yet he doesn’t add a person walking on these paths; hence, this allows the viewer to feel as if they were the only one standing on the Wheatfield, thus Gogh inundates one with the feeling of loneliness. One should notice that there are three specific paths with the left and the right path not having a definitive origin or destination; however, the middle path is winding to the horizon which begs the question of its destination, does this path lead to something new or to an unavoidable end. The fate of the middle path is left to interpretation by Van Gogh, yet the uncertainty of its meaning may have been a...

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