Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, May 1890
oil on paper,
50 cm x 65.5 cm
Credits (obliged to state): Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)
Van Gogh based this painting on a print by Rembrandt (1606-1669) – but only part of the print. He left out the main figure: Christ with his arm raised. Van Gogh focused on the theme of human suffering. He probably identified with Lazarus in the tomb. That would explain why he gave the figure a red beard. The two women by the grave are two acquaintances from Arles: Mrs Roulin, in the green dress, and Mrs Ginoux, in a dark dress with colourful stripes.
A few of the pigments have faded considerably. This has largely done away with the original contrast between the warm colours in the background and the cold colours of Lazarus in the foreground.