Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, October-November 1889
oil on canvas,
74.2 cm x 93.0 cm
Credits (obliged to state): Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)
A peasant couple sit by the light of an oil lamp. The woman is mending clothes and her husband is working on a wicker basket. Their child is asleep; next to the fireplace, a cat dozes. The canvas radiates a quiet serenity. During his stay in the psychiatric hospital in Saint-Rémy (FR), Vincent received a series of prints from Theo after paintings by Jean-François Millet. That was a French painter he greatly admired. Van Gogh used one of those prints as his model for this work.
He 'translated' the black-and-white print into a painting in colour. Using gentle purple and violet tones, he was able to capture the calm of the evening.