van Gogh's letters - unabridged and annotated
 
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Letter from Theo van Gogh to Vincent van Gogh
Saint-Rémy, 29 July 1889
Relevant paintings:


"Corner in the Garden of Saint-Paul Hospital," Vincent van Gogh
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"Red Chestnuts in the Public Park at Arles," Vincent van Gogh
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"La Crau with Peach Trees in Blossom," Vincent van Gogh
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Letter T13
Paris, 29 July 1889

My dear Vincent,

I am a little uneasy that you have not received my letter, which contained a money order for 100 francs. You usually reply as soon as you receive it; if this were not so, I should say that you have had no time for it.

I reproach myself with writing you so seldom, but letter-writing is extremely difficult for me lately; I don't know what the reason for it is. I received your last consignment, which was in perfect condition, and which I think extremely beautiful. 1 Are these the things you set aside expressly in order to let them dry? - for in most of these canvases I find more clarity of expression and such a fine general effect. The one with the underbrush and the trees overgrown with ivy, the Promenade at Arles, and the fields with the gardens in spring are very beautiful. These and others too are now mounted on stretchers, from which we removed the canvases which were on them and which are now at Tangui's. They make a very fine showing in the frames. As for Tanguy himself, he likes them very much, too. In my opinion you choose such fine subjects for your pictures: those trees with their dense foliage full of freshness and bathed in sunlight are marvellously good. I should be very pleased if you lived in an environment which was wholly to your taste, and if you were surrounded by people you liked, and who returned your friendship, for you cannot work better than you are doing now, and what a number of fine things you have turned out!

It is fortunate that your health is good. Mr. Peyron wrote the other day to tell me that he thought your condition satisfactory. Let us hope this will get better and better. Jo's parents are here at the moment - her mother staying with us, her father with André. It is a nice distraction especially for Jo, and it forces her to take exercise, which seems to be necessary. She is looking well, only she is a little weak. It is the change of life, and in consequence of the way I am being taken care of now I am going to regain my strength, as soon as the evil is past. Yesterday we went to St. Germain. Oh, how beautiful the countryside is. Why do people go and wear themselves out in cities when they might breathe wholesome air, which brings life back?

Do you leave the establishment once in a while now? Write me a letter if you can - just tell me how you are. Don't work too much.

A cordial handshake, also from Jo.

Yours, Theo

1. See Vincent's letter 600.


At this time, Vincent was 36 year old
Source:
Theo van Gogh. Letter to Vincent van Gogh. Written 29 July 1889 in Saint-Rémy. Translated by Mrs. Johanna van Gogh-Bonger, edited by Robert Harrison, number T13.
URL: http://webexhibits.org/vangogh/letter/20/T13.htm.

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