Friday, June 1, 2012
A Particular Biography
My trip to the library this week netted me two hardbacks from the new books on the round table near the entrance. The John Ramsey bio was a quick and excellent read that brought tears to my eyes several times. Now I am dipping my toes in the exhaustive Van Gogh biography that came out in 2011. Since my trip to Provence, to Arles whose sunflowers he painted in their various forms, to the St. Paul Asylum in St. Remy where he healed, and especially to Cathedrale d’Images where I saw each little brushstroke of his paintings projected on cavernous, white limestone walls, I feel like I know my friend Vincent personally, and I declare him not crazy. I do not know how I will perceive this book as it opens up to me, but so far it is unlike the Freud bio I read in winter whose biographer seemed to admire the subject immensely. Instead I am already perceiving negativity, facts but lacking understanding. I hope not only the history will be accurately told, but also that Vincent's beauty will shine as his life unfolds on the pages.