+
-
discover the places where Vincent lived and worked
 
 

Panorama Mesdag
The Hague, The Netherlands

  • August 23, 1881 - August 25, 1881

Panorama Mesdag, a vast painting of Scheveningen, the surrounding dune landscape and the North Sea, opened on 1 August 1881. With its remarkable dimensions – 14 metres high and 120 metres wide – it remains the largest painting in the Netherlands today. The Hague artist and art collector Hendrik Willem Mesdag (1831–1915) was commissioned to paint the canvas in 1880 by a specially created Belgian company, S.A. du Panorama Maritime de la Haye. It took Mesdag four months to complete the work, with assistance from artists including Théophile de Bock (1851–1904), George Hendrik Breitner (1857–1923) and Bernardus Johannes Blommers (1845–1914).

Vincent went to see the Panorama Mesdag with De Bock in August 1881 and was extremely enthusiastic:

“Then I saw Mesdag’s panorama with him, that’s a work for which one must have the utmost respect. It put me in mind of what Bürger or Thoré, I think, said aboutRembrandt’s Anatomy lesson. That painting’s only fault is not to have any faults.”  

 

In other words: the painting’s only flaw is that it has none.

After the commissioning organisation went bankrupt, the well-to-do Mesdag bought the work himself in 1886. Panorama Mesdag still stands in its original location and is open to visitors.

literature

Teun Berserik and Feico Hoekstra
Vincent van Gogh: de vroege jaren 

Amsterdam, 2012

F. Leeman and J. Sillevis
De Haagse School en de jonge Van Gogh

Zwolle, 2005

In de voetsporen van Van Gogh
Wandeling bij De Haagse School en de jonge Van Gogh
Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, 2005

Michiel van der Mast and Charles Dumas
Van Gogh en Den Haag

Zwolle, 1990

Jan Meyers
De jonge Vincent: jaren van vervoering en vernedering

Amsterdam, 1989

 
* Note: Van Gogh Route reserves the right not to post comments it deems unreasonable, negative or otherwise inappropriate for the site. Such comments will be removed.

Tips & remarks