Van Gogh's Letters
Five amazing facts you need to know about Van Gogh's letters.
Discover Vincent van Gogh’s finest letters in our 2020 autumn exhibition: ‘Your loving Vincent’: Van Gogh’s Greatest Letters. Due to their fragility, his letters are rarely exhibited. This is a unique opportunity to see Van Gogh’s greatest letters alongside his masterpieces.
Vincent van Gogh was not only a talented artist but also an avid letter writer. He wrote compelling letters about all aspects of his life: his dreams and disappointments, his love life, friendships and arguments, and about his battle with his illness.
He also wrote about his ambitions as an artist, and often added sketches to his letters of pieces he was working on, or of works that he had recently finished. When reading these letters, it is almost as if you are looking over the shoulder of the artist and witnessing his artworks come to life.
The exhibition ‘Your loving Vincent’: Van Gogh’s Greatest Letters features a selection of his best letters, displayed alongside world-famous paintings and drawings by Vincent van Gogh such as The Bedroom, The Potato Eaters and The Sower.
The Van Gogh Museum is home to the majority – more than 800 – of Vincent van Gogh’s letters, most of which he wrote to his brother Theo. The letters are fragile, and therefore only rarely go on display.
Van Gogh's letters can not only be seen, but also heard. A number of gripping, surprising or touching excerpts bring you even closer to Vincent.
Exactly where and how you can listen to the letters with your phone is clearly marked in the exhibition. Don't forget to bring your own earbuds or headphones!
Listen to the audio letters before, during or after your visit to the museum.
People from all around the world were invited to submit their dearest letters, offering them the chance to have their letters exhibited next to Van Gogh’s.
The finest submitted letters are on display in the exhibition. They were sent from countries including Kosovo, the US and Israel, and addressing lost love, reclaimed friendship and lots more.
These modern-day letters show how the profound value of ‘old-fashioned’ writing, receiving and keeping still applies today.
Vincent van Gogh: A Life in Letters is a new anthology featuring Vincent van Gogh’s greatest 76 letters, published by Thames & Hudson.
This publication is richly illustrated with numerous sketches and paintings. The book offers an insight into Van Gogh’s thoughts and feelings, his close relationship with his brother Theo and his sometimes troubled relationships with his family, friends and other artists.
The anthology and other books about Van Gogh's letters are available in the museum shop and online via our webstore.
This exhibition was realised with support from our lenders, partners and sponsors.