After almost 100 years, a new Van Gogh painting has been identified by the Van Gogh museum in a Norwegian attic. It’s called Sunset at Montmajour.
According The Telegraph, the painting was discovered in 1928, however, it had been attributed to another artist since it didn’t show Vincent Van Gogh’s signature. The museum had previously rejected the canvas, so it had stayed in hiding ever since then. However, thanks to new techniques and technological advancements it has allowed museum experts to properly identify the painting. The identification was helped in part thanks to a two-year investigation, the style, the materials used and a letter the Dutch artist wrote to his brother Theo back in July 5th, 1888 where he describes the painting:
Yesterday at sunset I was on a stony heath where some very small and twisted oaks grow; in the background, a ruin on the hill, and wheat in the valley. It was romantic, you can’t escape it, like Monticelli; the sun was pouring bright yellow rays on the bushes and the ground, a perfect shower of gold. And all the lines were lovely, the whole thing nobly beautiful. You would not have been a bit surprised to see knights and ladies suddenly appear, coming back from hunting or hawking, or to have heard the voice of some old Provençal troubadour. The fields looked violet, the distances blue. I brought back a study, but it is very far below what I tried to do.
Sunset at Montmajour features the ruins of an abbey near Montmajour hill near Arles, France, one of the beloved locations of the painter.
With an ambitious 93.3cm x 73.3 cm canvas, it is number 180 among Theo Van Gogh’s collection, and it is described as researcher Teio Meedendrop as an “experimental work”, one of many that Vincent did not esteem as much back then than we do now. He struggled with bipolar disorder, depression and other mental issues throughout his life, which led him to taking his own life in 1890.
Little did he know he’d be considered one of the greatest of all-time in our day and age, and art would not have evolved to such lengths without his mastery of color and heartfelt style.