Watercolour on paper
The authenticity of this work has been confirmed by the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam.
Oldenzeel Art Gallery, Rotterdam
C. Staib, Rotterdam
P.A. Regnault, Jr., Laren
Van Wisselingh Art Gallery, Amsterdam
N.J. van Tussenbroek, Haarle, 1953
P. Citroen, Wassenaar and M.L. de Boer Art Gallery, Amsterdam, 1957
W. Brinkman, Schipluiden
Sale: Sotheby's, London, 28th June 1961, lot 79
Acquired by the present owner prior to 1969
Jacob-Baart de la Faille, L'Œuvre de Vincent van Gogh, Catalogue raisonné, Paris & Brussels, 1928, vol. I, p. 61, no. 1094, catalogued; vol II, no. 544, pl. LXVI, illustrated
Walther Vanbeselaere, De Hollandshe periode (1880-1885) in het werk van Vincent van Gogh, Amsterdam, 1937, pp. 236 & 410
Jacob-Baart de la Faille, The Works of Vincent van Gogh, His Paintings and Drawings, London, 1970, p. 279, no. 1094, illustrated
Jan Hulsker, The New Complete Van Gogh, Paintings, Drawings, Sketches, Amsterdam & Philadelphia, 1996, p. 94, no. 398, illustrated
E.N. Heenk, Van Gogh’s Drawings. An Analysis of their Production and Uses, unpublished PhD thesis (Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London, London), 1995, pp. 96-97
Sjraar van Heugten, Vincent van Gogh: Drawings, The Early Years 1880-1883, volume I, p. 240, cited
On 11 September 1883 van Gogh left The Hague for the province of Drenthe, aiming to of work hard there at improving his watercolour technique. This goal was paricularly important as election to the Hollandsche Teekenmaatschappij required artists to present works in this medium.
The region, close to Nieuw Amsterdam, appealed greatly to him: "Drenthe is so beautiful, it absorbs and satisfies me so absolutely that if I could not be here forever, I should wish I had never seen it. It is inexpressibly beautiful." (Letter 403  between 29 October and 15 November 1883). During October, peat was being dried nearby whose rounded heaps enable the artist to work upon his dramatically improved technique. Painterly and pregnant with mood, the present work reflect van Gogh's unorthodox working methods. Evening, for example, is powerfully suggested by pink watercolour in the skyline.
The drawing's central, vertical fold which is also present on Peatheap with Canal (JH 399; F 1099 in the collection of the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam) probably indicates that the artist folded the drawing for his trip from Drenthe to his parental home in Nuenen, Brabant.
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