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Van Gogh: Fields and Flowers.

Van Gogh: Fields and Flowers. Debra N. Mancoff. San Francisco: Chronicle Books (800- 722-6657), 1999. Illus., hardcover, 94 pp., $18.95.

In this book the author concentrates on the last and most productive years of Vincent van Gogh's life when his painting interest focused on the beauty of nature. Filled with more than forty color reproductions of his depictions of the natural world, we are treated to details and full views of some of van Gogh's most brilliant masterpieces. In the opening chapter, A Brief Life, we find photographs, self-portraits, and early, paintings complemented with well-written text that takes us through the turbulent formative years of the artist. Subsequent chapters, Bouquets, Flowering Trees, Irises, Sunflowers and Fields, present and discuss van Gogh's work in those areas. Six different interpretations of sunflowers are reproduced and discussed in the Sunflowers chapter. The text provides a nice balance with comments on the artworks and on the various factors that influenced van Gogh's style and subject matter. While the majority of works reproduced fits into the context of the title, several of van Gogh's masterworks on other subject matter -- The Bedroom at Aries, Starry Night, Chair with Pipe and others are also shown for comparative purposes. Works by Hiroshige, Utagawa, and Gauguin are also included. The text is accompanied by insightful extracts from the artist's letters to his brother Theo. Highly recommended.
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Title Annotation:Review
Author:Anderson, Kent
Publication:School Arts
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Mar 1, 2000
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