Vincent’s life had plenty of ups & downs, but he could always count on the support of his younger brother Theo. It was Theo who advised Vincent to become an artist and supported him financially, and when things got tough, it was Theo at his side.
The Brothers Vincent and Theo
Both brothers started out as assistants in the art trade. Theo’s career goes from strength to strength, he moves onwards and upwards. Vincent has trouble finding his feet, and tries his hand at a string of new jobs. At the age of 27, Theo suggests that he become an artist.
Theo’s job takes him to Paris, while Vincent is starting out as an artist in the Netherlands. They write letters to each other almost every day.
Theo writes about the colourful, modern paintings that are popular in the French capital. He invites Vincent to Paris, so that he can see this art with his own eyes. Vincent moves in with his brother.
In Paris, Vincent makes rapid progress. But after two years of hard work, an unhealthy lifestyle and (too) many city distractions, he wants to leave. He heads to Arles, in the South of France, seeking peace, colour and light.
Theo supports Vincent’s dream of establishing an artists’ community in Arles. He convinces his artist friend Paul Gauguin to join Vincent in the South of France.
Vincent and Gauguin work together amiably for a while, but tensions soon rise. After a nasty row, Vincent becomes very confused and cuts off his left ear. Theo immediately catches a train to visit his brother.
In the meantime, Theo had married Jo Bonger. They have a son, and name him after Vincent. Vincent starts to worry. Theo now has a family to look after, and he is concerned that his brother will no longer be able to support him.
After the ear incident, Vincent admits himself to an asylum. He is scared that he will suffer more attacks of his illness. Despite everything, he keeps painting.
A year later, Theo finds a new home for Vincent. Close to Paris where Theo lives, and under the care of a physician in the town.
However, despite his new surroundings, Vincent is still mentally unstable. He attempts suicide and is badly injured. Theo once again travels immediately to Vincent. He is at his side when Vincent dies.
A year later, Theo also passes away. His wife Jo knows the strength of their brotherly love, and therefore arranges for Theo to be reburied next to Vincent.