Vincent van Gogh, letter to Émile Bernard, Arles, 12 April 1888, Letter 3, page 2
Thaw Collection, given in honor of Charles E. Pierce, Jr., 2007
I follow no system of brushwork at all, I hit the canvas with irregular strokes, which I leave as
they are, impastos, uncovered spots of canvas—corners here and there left inevitably unfinished—
reworkings, roughnesses; well, I'm inclined to think that the result is sufficiently worrying and
annoying not to please people with preconceived ideas about technique.
Here's a sketch, by the way, the entrance to a Provençal orchard with its yellow reed fences,
with its shelter (against the mistral), black cypresses, with its typical vegetables of various greens,
yellow lettuces, onions and garlic and emerald leeks.
While always working directly on the spot, I try to capture the essence in the drawing—then
I fill the spaces demarcated by the outlines (expressed or not) but felt in every case, likewise with
simplified tints, in the sense that everything
© 2007 Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam