Vincent made four paintings of the Alyscamps, a Roman necropolis a few hundred metres from the centre of Arles. He painted the works in late October 1888, while Paul Gauguin was staying with him in the Yellow House. One pair, Les Alyscamps (‘Leaf Fall’), hung in Gauguin's room. Vincent described one of the paintings in a letter to his brother Theo:
“I think that you’d like the leaf-fall that I’ve done. It’s lilac poplar trunks cut by the frame where the leaves begin. These tree-trunks, like pillars, line an avenue where old Roman tombs coloured lilac-blue are lined up to right and left. Now the ground is covered as if by a carpet with a thick layer of orange and yellow leaves — fallen. Some are still falling, like snowflakes. And in the avenue dark figurines of lovers. The top of the painting is a very green meadow and no sky, or almost none.”
Gauguin also made two paintings of the Alyscamps.