discover the places where Vincent lived and worked

Nuenen, The Netherlands

Vincent often went to the Gestel printing company in Eindhoven. In April 1885, planning to make a series of lithographs of peasant life, he ordered a stone from Gestel:

“I’m now getting use of the stone — graining, paper and printing of 50 copies for 3 guilders. I’m thinking of making a series of subjects from peasant life, in short —the peasants at home.” Read the complete letter

The first – and last – lithograph in the series was The Potato Eaters, which he based on the painting of the same name. According to Dirk Gestel’s recollection, Vincent drew the image directly on the stone, without making a preliminary sketch. He rubbed the crayon with his fingers. This was an irrevocable error that caused spots in the printing. Vincent complained about the results in a letter to Theo:

“What you say about the lithograph, that the effect is woolly, I think so too, and it isn’t my own fault, in so far as the lithographer insisted that it wouldn’t print properly because I’d left virtually no white on the stone. On his advice I then bit out light areas. If I had just printed it as the drawing was, it would have been generally darker but wouldn’t have lacked cohesion. And there would still have been atmosphere between the planes.” Read the complete letter


Ton de Brouwer
Van Gogh en Nuenen
Venlo, 1984­­­­­

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