Van Gogh Up Close exhibit

Self Portrait as an Artist (1888)

In Philadelphia, one of the most widely visited museums to check out visual art is Philadelphia’s very own Museum of Art. The Museum of Art is one of the largest museums in the country and is one of the most beautiful attractions in Philadelphia. From now until May 6th, the Art Museum will be hosting Van Gogh Up Close, an exhibit that will be presenting work from Van Gogh that he created during the final years of his life; years that can be marked by artistic experimentation that had not previously been apparent in Van Gogh’s work. This artistic experimentation period included playing with the concepts of depth of field and focus. Van Gogh began to focus subjects in his paintings in different locations in order to change the desired message or object of focus he wished to convey to his audience.

This is especially interesting, as Van Gogh was one the first painters to experiment with this concept of depth perception and focus. Van Gogh realized that, by changing the focus of certain objects or subjects in his work, he was able to change the viewer’s perception of the work as a whole. This is great for people like me who don’t know exactly what they “should” be looking for when viewing art by famous artists such as Van Gogh. I feel that the more credible an artist and his work are, the more likely it is that the viewer will feel he should have set expectations of what he “should” be taking away from the work. However, with Van Gogh, his pieces are made to draw the viewer to specific aspects of the piece while also allowing the viewer to perceive this object of focus in relation to the rest of the piece in any way he/she wants to.

Last year, I visited the original Van Gogh museum while I was in Amsterdam and I was pleasantly surprised to witness some of the original, famous Van Gogh pieces that seem to pop up all over popular culture today. Van Gogh is an artist whose work has seemed to stand the test of time; even after hundreds of years, many people still find his work to be beautiful, inspiring, and thought-provoking.

Some famous pieces that are on display at this exhibit include Van Gogh’s famous “Sunflowers” painting and his “Field of Flowers” painting. These works showcase nature in a surreal format and are well-known by many. If you’re interested in pieces that are famous world-wide and that have been around for hundreds and hundreds of years, then you should definitely check out this exhibit! Philadelphia’s Museum of Art is open seven days a week; times vary from 10:00am-9:00PM, depending on the day of the week. Tickets to this exhibit can be purchased at the museum or online for $20.00-$25.00.

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