discover the places where Vincent lived and worked

Antwerp, Belgium

  • December 17, 1885

On one of his walks, Vincent sketched Het Steen, a fortress on the Scheldt. He also produced a painting, which he referred to as "detailed", but it has not been preserved. Vincent went to see a number of dealers in the city in an attempt to sell the painting. One expressed interest:

“I’ve been to see someone else with my view of Het Steen, who thought the tone and colour good, who was in a state of confusion drawing up his inventory and is in small premises, though, but where I could go back after the New Year. It’s a good thing for when there are foreigners who want to have a souvenir of Antwerp, and for this reason I’ll make a few more in the same genre of townscapes.” Read the complete letter

It is unclear, however, whether the dealer ever actually took on the work.

The two drawings of Het Steen today comprise part of the collection of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. 


Guido Persoons
Vincent van Gogh te Antwerpen in 1885-1886 : zijn opleiding in de Koninklijke Academie voor Schone Kunsten te Antwerpen als bijdrage tot de vorming van zijn kunstenaarschap
In: Periscoop, Vriendenkring van de Koninklijke Academie, 14-1 (1990) 

Mark Tralbaut
Van Gogh te Antwerpen
Antwerpen, 1958

Louis van Tilborg and Ella Hendriks
Vincent van Gogh schilderijen, deel 2: Antwerpen en Parijs
Amsterdam, 2011

Ella Hendriks and Louis van Tilborgh
New views on Van Gogh’s development in Antwerp and Paris: an integrated art historical and technical study of his paintings in the Van Gogh Museum
Universiteit van Amsterdam, dissertation, 2006

Marije Vellekoop, Sjraar van Heugten
Vincent van Gogh tekeningen, deel 3: Antwerpen en Parijs 1885 – 1888
Amsterdam, 2001

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