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Rare Van Gogh Self Portrait coming to Pasadena this December

“I wish they would only take me as I am”- Vincent Van Gogh

by Leticia Marie Sanchez

A rare self portrait of Vincent Van Gogh, on loan from the National Gallery of Artwill grace the Norton Simon on December 7.

Van Gogh created this intense portrait during a creative and prolific period of self-confinement at the mental asylum Saint-Paul-de-Mausole at Saint-Rémy.He painted the introspective self portrait only one year before his tragic and mysterious death*.

Although Van Gogh painted thirty six self-portraits during his lifetime, the one to be seen at the Norton Simon is unique: only three self-portraits depict him as an artist, holding his palette and brush.

For more on the upcoming exhibit, please see:


*A past Cultural Cocktail Hour article explored the mysterious circumstances surrounding Van Gogh’s death. A CBS News report discussed a ground-breaking biography by two Pulitzer-Prize winning writers who argued that Vincent Van Gogh may not have committed suicide, as has long been surmised.Instead, their evidence pointed to his being shot by wealthy, rowdy teenage boys. The teens had taken previous pleasure in bullying Van Gogh by pouring salt in his coffee, snakes in his paint can, and having their girlfriends torment him. The authors argued that although these teens shot Van Gogh, as he lay dying, he protected them from police, asking investigators not to accuse anyone of the crime. For the full report on Van Gogh’s death, please see:


Posted by on October 10th, 2012

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