The Life and Works of Vincent van Gogh Written by David Sasson
Perhaps most prolific post-impressionist painter of all time, Vincent van Gogh gave us his mind, his heart, his soul, and, most notably, his ear. Van Gogh paintings are probably better known generally than those of any other painter in history. His masterpieces, such as Starry Night and Sunflowers, have graced art lovers’ walls for nearly 150 years.
Born in 1853, van Gogh was son of a Dutch Protestant minister. Early in his life, he possessed a moody temperament that would later haunt him in his efforts to become a successful artist. His brief and turbulent life epitomizes mad genius legend. Rejected by women he loved because of his difficult and contradictory personality, his few friendships usually ended in bitter arguments.
Strangely, van Gogh’s life had very little to do with painting. By age of 27 he had been a salesman in an art gallery, a French tutor, a theological student and an evangelical minister. It was not until 10 years before his death that he decided to pick up a brush. His early work, Dutch period of 1880-85, consists of dark greenish-brown, heavily painted studies of peasants and miners. By 1888, after working under Pisarro, van Gogh began experimenting with a brighter range of colors that are characteristic of many of his later works.
In 1888, in ill health, van Gogh moved to Arles with Gauguin for a brief period for release from Paris. At Arles, fraught with internal tension, van Gogh mutilated his left ear in course of his first attack of dementia. His paintings from this period include incomparable series of sunflowers: Two Sunflowers, Vase with Twelve Sunflowers, Four Cut Sunflowers and Sunflowers.
Dr. Jan Hulsker, one of world's foremost scholars of Vincent van Gogh, suggests that sunflower series "perhaps more than any other of his paintings, have made him known throughout world. They are often only works with which he is identified." In recent years a great deal of attention has been devoted to authenticity of some of sunflower paintings (namely, Yasuda version). Most experts, however, have come to conclusion that Yasuda work is genuine. Unfortunately arguments about authenticity have detracted from more critical and analytical studies of works themselves, and detailed critical commentary of sunflower series is surprisingly difficult to find. Overall, Jan Hulsker's observation of sunflower series truly mirrors Vincent's own belief that these works would indeed prove to be those for which Vincent is best beloved. Van Gogh once said in a letter to his brother, Theo, in 1889, “You may know that peony is Jeannin's, hollyhock belongs to Quost, but sunflower is mine in a way."
Vincent van Gogh's time in Arles, France was a pivotal point in his life, and many of his most renowned works originated there. After years of study and struggle he moved to south of France in an attempt to further explore his art. Surprisingly, during period in which Vincent was at his most productive, he was alone. Called "fou-rou" (crazy red-head) by many of townspeople of Arles, Vincent was often viewed with suspicion and scorn. A number of Vincent's letters to his brother, Theo, reflect his isolation and his loneliness.
Laser Eye Correction Surgery: Will It Work For You?Written by Jenna Keys
Technology moves at alarmingly fast rates now, and where glasses or contact lenses have been required in past to correct vision deficiencies there is now an alternative. Laser eye correction is a relatively affordable procedure that means you won’t need to wear your reading glasses anymore and can correct virtually any eye problem. It is suitable for any adult with an eye problem and may be answer you are looking for.
What is Laser Eye Correction?
Laser Eye Correction, or refractive surgery as it is also known, is a quick procedure usually taking up to 15 minutes per eye. The actual laser treatment consists of less than 1 minute. During this process a laser scans your eyes pinpointing hundreds of unique points on your cornea. Once this is done, software used can determine exactly where fault lies and ascertain minor adjustments needed to restore your sight back to a reasonable level. The laser then reshapes cornea so that your eyesight becomes at least 20/40 vision, although in most cases it can be restored completely to 20/20 vision. Your surgeon will, of course, talk you through exact procedure before surgery commences and if you have any questions, do not be afraid to ask.
You will be administered with anaesthetic eye drops prior to any procedure and a subtle restraining device placed on your eyes so there is no danger of you blinking. The apparatus accounts for small eye movements, so even if you can’t quite manage to stare at red light all way through procedure there shouldn’t be a problem.
Most patients suffer from little or no discomfort and recovery time after procedure is very little. It is advised that on completion of correction you rest your eyes until next day, don’t stare at a television or a computer and don’t go anywhere where there is smoke or other pollutants. Next day you should be able to return to your normal daily life without need for glasses or contact lenses.
Exactly how effective is treatment?
Approximately 95% of patients have 20/20 vision or better following treatment and half have reported that their eyesight is better after treatment than when using glasses or contacts before. Ordinarily there is no need for further treatment because sight you have after correction is sight you will have for rest of your life. In fact, many clinics offer equivalent of a lifetime guarantee, so if you do need any enhancements you will receive them free of charge.